Wine ‘not heart-healthy for obese’
As opposed to the common belief that a glass or two of wine is good since its antioxidants work to protect the heart as the alcohol hits the head, researchers have found that drinking has no protective effect if you are carrying a bit of extra weight.
According to obesity expert from London, Tim Lobstein, previous findings that small amounts of alcohol lowered heart disease risk were taken from surveys more than 40-years-old.
Studies have indicated that alcohol may raise levels of good cholesterol and be beneficial to blood vessels, while antioxidants in wine are thought to protect arteries.
‘‘But we were concerned that the findings may not apply to our modern, fatter population,’’ the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Lobstein from Curtin University’s Public Health Advocacy Institute in Perth as saying.
For the study, the researchers revisited the data and found the protective effect held for slim men, but not for those with a Body Mass Index above 27.5. An index of 26 to 30 is considered overweight.
‘‘We need to check other surveys and see if they show the same pattern, and we need to check the data for women,’’ Lobstein said.
‘‘Given the link between even small amounts of alcohol and many common chronic diseases, any heart-healthy effects are likely to be outweighed by other risks. It is best to say that there is no safe level of alcohol consumption, especially if you are overweight,” he added.