Six glasses of wine a week linked to lower risk of cataracts, scientists say

Drinking six glasses of wine a week is linked to a lower risk of cataracts, according to a new scientific study of people who drank up to 14 units a week.

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Scientific researchers have found that moderate alcohol consumption appears to be linked to a lower risk of cataract surgery.

The study stated that those who drank up to 14 units a week – the maximum recommended amount by the NHS – were less at risk of needing the operation, which removes cloudy patches from the lens of the eye.

The most marked reduction in this risk of cataract surgery was found among wine drinkers, the study – which was conducted by Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and University College London’s Institute of Ophthalmology – found.

Individuals who drank wine five or more times each week were found to be up to 23% less likely to require cataract surgery compared to non-drinkers. Moderate drinking of wine was linked, therefore, to lower risk of cataracts.

Those who predominantly drank beer, cider or spirits were not found to significantly improve their risk of needing the operation.

Lead author of the study Sharon Chua remarked of its findings:

“Cataract development may be due to gradual damage from oxidative stress during ageing. The fact that our findings were particularly evident in wine drinkers may suggest a protective role of polyphenol antioxidants, which are abundant in red wine.”

The analysis took in data from nearly 500,000 people and is the largest of its kind.

“Our findings suggest a lower risk of undergoing cataract surgery with low to moderate alcohol consumption. The association was particularly apparent with wine consumption,” scientists concluded.

They did note, however, that excessive alcohol consumption carries its own long list of associated risks and diseases.

Meanwhile, a study has found that cheap wine tastes better when we’re told its expensive. You can read more on that story here.

 

H/T: The Times

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