Drinking After 60 Actually Helps Fend Off Dementia

RealClear Staff


According to a study in the American Journal of Alzheimers Disease and Other Dementias, retirees should not stop tipping back a martini or a beer. In fact, some alcohol in their system can help fight off frightening disorders like memory loss. 

Normally, in stories like this there's a catch. However, there doesn't seem to be much of one. 

1. Two Drink Minimum

The study found that people over the age of 60 who do not have current signs of dementia or memory loss were aided by alcohol. It said that seniors who drink about two drinks a day have a larger volume in their hippocampus, which is a crucial part of the brain for maintaining episodic memory. 

2. Keeping Memories

The second exciting drop of news from this study said that moderate drinking among seniors can help retain memory of events. It doesn't outright say it, but anyone who has had a loved one suffer dementia knows that is a major part of the disease. 

3. Low Impact

More good news. The study found that alcohol consumption didn't impact cognitive functioning, which is a good sign for seniors hoping to keep their independence and their happy hour dates. 

Upon Closer Inspection

With studies like this there is usually a list of catches that runs longer than the side effects mentioned in a television drug ad. However, there doesn't seem to be much of a trap to the senior drinking theory. The only one mentioned was that it is possible that seniors who benefited from a couple drinks already had the genes to avoid dementia to begin with.

However, it doesn't hurt to be safe and pour a couple pints, right?

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