- Cardiovascular disease as the most common cause of death
- This is how the arteries change with age
- Studies: Positive effect of alcohol on hardening of the arteries
- Physical and mental consequences of alcohol
- You can do it keep your arteries really young
“This is how alcohol can protect against a heart attack,” with this and similar phrases, media headlines come up again and again when it comes to scientific results about the effects of alcohol. Recently American scientists from Baltimore National Institute on Aging concluded that a glass of wine a day slows down the aging of the arteries. It would be nice to believe that, because alcohol is, after all, the ultimate stimulant. Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death in Germany. Approximately 30 to 40 percent of all adults in Germany have high blood pressure. The results of the study sound paradoxical when you consider that it is recommended to minimize alcohol consumption in the fight against high blood pressure. So what is the meaning of the thesis does alcohol really keep the arteries young?
This happens to the arteries as you age
If you want to know, you should first look at what young arteries are and how our cardiovascular system changes with age. The heart muscle tissue gradually remodels over the course of a lifetime. Due to the growth of connective tissue, the heart can no longer beat as hard as in younger people. The arteries begin to change around the age of 30. Her elasticity decreases. Atherosclerosis is developing, ie narrowing of blood vessels. It is stronger for some and weaker for others. As a result of the change in heart muscle tissue and less elastic arteries: physical performance decreases.
Various studies already have one preventive effect of alcohol on cardiovascular disease shown. But how and why can alcohol keep the arteries young? That’s what researchers at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore have asked. To determine the degree of hardening of the arterial walls, they used ultrasound to determine the diameter of the carotid artery and also measured the blood pressure of the test subjects.
IN Studies A total of 563 people aged 20 to 90 participated. Participants were divided into four groups according to the degree of alcohol consumption: a group with people who do not drink at all, a group with occasional drinkers, moderate drinkers and heavy drinkers.
Alcohol keeps you fit: just a myth or a truth?
Study Outcome: Regardless of age group, moderate alcohol users had the greatest elasticity in the arteries. So if you drank one to ten glasses of wine or the same amount of other alcohol a week, you were best equipped to prevent hardening of the arteries. I.e arterial hardening increased with age in all participants, but less so with moderate alcohol consumption than with no consumption or heavy drinking.
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So does drinking alcohol help protect against cardiovascular disease? Despite the positive results of the study, the researchers do not recommend making conclusions too quickly. Anyone considering increasing alcohol consumption should definitely discuss this with their doctor. The study only points to correlations. Ultimately, it is not possible to prove whether alcohol is the real cause of better health or longer life. Alcohol can not only negatively affect people’s perceptions and behavior. Doctors also agree Alcohol damages mucosal cells and is even carcinogenic. Hepatic dysfunction and mental disorders can also lead to alcohol consumption.
Conclusion: Does alcohol keep arteries young? There is at least some truth to the myth. According to the study, alcohol has a positive effect on the elasticity of blood vessel walls. A glass of wine delays the hardening of the arteries, which occurs with age, daily. But if you really want to keep your arteries fit, you should do better resort to other measures. These include one low fat diet with lots of fruits and vegetables no nicotinesufficient movement and one healthy Work-life balance and finally (only) moderate alcohol consumption.
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