So that you get pleasure from a glass of wine or two with dinner, the occasional chilly beer with buddies, or a flowery cocktail at social gatherings…
However have you ever ever puzzled how alcohol would possibly have an effect on your bone well being?
In any case, analysis reveals that after you hit age 40, you lose about 1% of your bone density a year. That is particularly regarding for girls who’re at increased risk of developing osteoporosis — a situation the place bones turn out to be weak and susceptible to fracture.
Does this imply it’s a must to surrender your glass of wine with dinner? Effectively, it will depend on whether or not you’re within the behavior of getting one glass or a number of…
As you possibly can think about, power heavy ingesting is unhealthy information to your bones.
Alcohol should be detoxified by the liver, and too many wipes out the liver’s provide of glutathione — the physique’s most vital antioxidant. This destroys the liver’s means to get rid of not simply alcohol, however the whole lot else it must clear… a state of affairs that ramps up inflammation within the physique.
This impacts your bones as a result of chronic, low-grade inflammation sends your osteoclasts (the specialised cells that break down bone) into overdrive. And since constructing new bone takes for much longer than breaking down outdated bone, an excessive amount of osteoclast exercise ends in bone thinning and, in the end, osteoporosis.
So it’s not shocking that excessive alcohol consumption has been repeatedly related to low bone mineral density (BMD), elevated markers of bone resorption (bone breakdown), and elevated danger of fragility fractures.
However earlier than you say goodbye to your favourite Shiraz, there’s some excellent news too…
Latest analysis reveals that moderate alcohol consumption really helps bone well being and lowers your danger of hip fracture.
On this research, researchers collected information on a lot of individuals over a 34-year interval:
- 75,180 ladies aged 53 on common when the research started
- 38,398 males aged 50 or older when the research started
In comparison with no alcohol consumption, low to reasonable alcohol consumption was related to a considerably decrease danger of hip fracture!
Now, it’s value noting the outcomes from observational research must be taken with a grain of salt as a result of different components could possibly be at play. For instance, on this occasion, individuals who have a glass of wine a day may additionally observe a Mediterranean weight-reduction plan or stroll extra. So these components may additionally contribute to their diminished danger of fracture. Nonetheless, these preliminary findings are promising…
However what do the researchers imply by “low to reasonable” alcohol consumption?
Not more than 20 grams of ethanol (alcohol) per day for girls and 30 grams per day for males.
To place that in perspective, right here’s the ethanol content material of various types of alcoholic beverages:
- 12.4 grams for a 4-oz glass of pink wine
- 12.1 grams for a 4-oz glass of white wine
- 13.9 grams for a 12-oz glass of standard beer
- 13.1 grams for a 12-oz glass of sunshine beer
- 14.0 grams for 1.5-oz shot of liquor
As you possibly can see, there’s no want to surrender your glass of wine with dinner! In reality, one glass a day could also be simply what the physician ordered.
However why is reasonable alcohol consumption good to your bones?
Wine, significantly pink wine, is very helpful as a consequence of its phenol content material. (Phenols are compounds that have an effect on the style and shade of wine!) Studies show that certain flavonoids, a kind of phenol current in wine, promote the creation of osteoblasts (the specialised cells that construct bone), and inhibit the creation of osteoclasts. What’s extra, greater phenol consumption has been related to greater BMD.
So to not fear, you possibly can toast the well being of your bones with a reasonable quantity of alcohol. Simply be sure you hold the rules I shared above in thoughts!
Lara Pizzorno, MDIV, MA, LMT
Lara is the best-selling creator of “Your Bones: How You Can Forestall Osteoporosis and Have Sturdy Bones for Life – Naturally”. She’s additionally a member of the American Medical Writers Affiliation with 30+ years of expertise and the Resident Bone Well being Skilled at AlgaeCal.