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A little alcohol may cut cardio risks

Drinking moderates amount of alcohol and staying physically active can reduce the odds of developing heart disease, research shows.

A study of 11,914 men and women from the Copenhagen City Heart Study found that people who did not drink or exercise had a 30-49% higher risk of heart disease than those who either drank, exercised or did both.

Lead study author Morten Gronbaek said: "Our study shows that being both physically active and drinking a moderate amount of alcohol is important for lowering the risk of both fatal ischaemic heart disease (IHD) and death from all causes. "

Compared with people who did not drink or exercise, physical activity reduced the risk of death from heart disease by 23% and drinking at least one alcoholic drink a week decreased the risk of death by 12-33%.

Author Ostergaard Pedersen said: "Neither physical activity alone nor alcohol intake can completely reverse the increased risk associated with alcohol abstention and lack of physical activity.

"Thus both moderate to high levels of physical activity and a moderate alcohol intake are important for lowering the risk of fatal IHD and deaths form all causes."

European Heart Journal

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