After analyzing the drinking habits of an estimated 237,000 women whom participated in two different Nurses Health Studies that date as far back as 1976, researchers have determined that long-term moderate beer drinking helps to significantly reduce women’s chances of developing rheumatoid arthritis. A condition that the Arthritis Foundation says affects over 1.5 million Americans, rheumatoid arthritis is a painful form of arthritis that is associated with immune system dysfunction. Usually developing during their 20s or 30s, rheumatoid arthritis tends to affect more women than it does men. As such, it is good news for women that there is a new line of defense to help them reduce their likelihood of developing the painful, and in some cases, debilitating condition.
While this isn’t the first study to find a correlation between alcohol consumption and a lowered risk of rheumatoid arthritis, this is the first study that has primarily focused on beer consumption. Reconfirming the results of previous studies, researchers found that moderate alcohol consumption (of any type of alcohol, whether it be wine, liquor, or beer) reduced risks by about 21%. Having the most significant impact on risk reduction, moderate beer drinking was linked to a 31% reduction, cutting women’s risks for developing rheumatoid arthritis by almost a third!
The study findings, where are published in the spring 2014 issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism
, reveal a correlation that should not be overlooked, although further research still needs to determine if there is an actual cause and effect relationship. Experts hope that future studies will take a more in-depth look into if there is a direct cause-and-effect relationship between beer drinking and reduced rheumatoid arthritis risks, as well as shedding some light into the exact mechanism behind how and why beer drinking causes reduced risks.
It should also be noted that researchers and health practitioners emphasize the importance of the term moderate beer drinking – which they say refers to the consumption of 2-4 beers per week (not per night!). Experts also urge people to use caution when increasing their alcohol intake, pointing out that there are still other negative health complications that can be caused by alcohol consumption and reminding consumers that certain medications may have negative interactions with alcohol. Those who already have the condition and are receiving medical treatment should use extra caution regarding their alcohol intake, many rheumatoid arthritic medication have negative interactions with alcohol and can cause severe liver damage. It is always a good idea to consult with your healthcare provider before increasing your alcohol intake.
Here at Mountainside Medical Equipment we know and understand how painful and debilitating arthritis can be, which is why we’ve dedicated an entire section of our website towards improving the quality of life for those living with arthritis
. With a variety of oral and topical pain relievers, as well as braces and supports, vitamins and supplements, and a wide range of daily living aids to choose from, you’re bound to find something to help relieve your pain and improve you mobility so you can get back to doing the things you love in life.