Raise your glasses, ladies! A new study conducted by researchers at the University of California has revealed that alcohol beats exercise when it comes to making it into your 90s.
The 15-year study, which was led by Claudia Kawas, M.D., and presented at the American Association for the Advancement of Science, tracked 1,700 individuals between the ages of 90 and 99 from 2003 to 2018 in hopes of finding out the secret to living a long, healthy, and happy life. At the end of the study, researchers discovered those who drank two glasses of wine or beer per day were 18 percent less likely to experience premature death. In addition, exercising 15 to 45 minutes per day was also associated with longevity, with participants reducing their risk of an early death by 11 percent. Cheers to that!
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“I have no explanation for it, but I do firmly believe that modest drinking improves longevity,” Dr. Kawas said in a statement.
While this is good news, we'd like to emphasize the word "modest." Everything in life is a balancing act, including a healthy food and beverage intake. Moderate drinking, according to Harvard Medical School, can not only be good for the heart and the circulatory system, but it has the potential to protect against type 2 diabetes. Heavy drinking, however, can cause damage to the heart and the liver and can ultimately be fatal.
Aside from moderate drinking and exercise, researchers also discovered that those who participated in some type of hobby were 21 percent less likely to pass away early. Kawas found that participants' weight seemed to play a part, as well. Study individuals who were slightly overweight, but not obese, cut their odds of premature death by three percent.
“It’s not bad to be skinny when you’re young, but it’s very bad to be skinny when you’re old,” Kawas noted in her address.
Of course, further study will be needed to determine exactly how our daily habits impact longevity. But what the research is suggesting — a couple glasses of wine here and there, more brisk walks with the dog, and a fun new hobby — sound like fun activities to us in the meantime!
See the full press briefing in the video below: