Enjoy a glass of wine after work? You have reasons to smile as a recent study has shed light on yet more health benefits of wine and moderate alcohol consumption. This time, findings suggest that it might help reduce brain inflammation, acting as a “cleanse” for the brain, having a mind clearing effect and reducing the risk of conditions such as Alzheimer and dementia.
The study, titled “Beneficial effects of low alcohol exposure, but adverse effects of high alcohol intake on glymphatic function” and published by the Scientific Reports Journal, was the result of work of a team lead by Dr. Maiken Nedergaard, of the Center for Translational Neuromedicine at URMC, that investigated the effects of ethanol exposure.
Among the study’s conclusions, they mentioned that “the main finding of this study is that a low dose of ethanol, comparable to 2.6 daily drink equivalents (for a 70 kg person) per day, increases glymphatic function in mice, which is expected to facilitate clearance of metabolic waste and potentially toxic proteins from the interstitial fluid.”
They progressed to hypothesize that this boost in the glymphatic system (which is responsible for removing waste/toxins from the brain) in combination with the reduction in GFAP (a type of protein linked to the maintaining of the strength in a type of cells present in the brain and spinal cord), “might potentially contribute to the lowered risk for Alzheimer’s disease and non-Alzheimer’s dementia among individuals with habitually low but non-zero alcohol intake.”
The author pointed out that the study was performed in mice and it shouldn’t be considered a direct guideline for consumption in humans, however, he pointed out that this exploratory study does present a novel “cellular and physiological mechanism contributing to the delay in onset of dementia in subjects with light alcohol intake.”
While research advances on this matter, pour yourself a glass of vino every now and then and enjoy sensibly, wine’s benefits are delivered when it is drunk moderately.
More information: nature.com