Turns out drinking wine doesn’t age you at all but like anything there’s a limit!
If one’s consumption of alcohol crosses the limit, it affects their long-term ageing process.
In a recent study done by University of Oxford, they found out that five large glasses of wine a week is the maximum amount of wine you can drink to avoid ageing.
For beer, it’s five pints of beer per week.
More than five glasses of wine per week seems to take a toll on our DNA, affecting the caps of our chromosomes called telomeres, which then contributes to our ageing process. The damages on telomeres has also been previously linked to Alzheimer’s and cardiovascular diseasea.
A person with a healthier and longer telomeres are considered to have longer lifespans. For instance, someone who drinks around 15 large glasses of 13% ABV wine is biologically three years older than someone who drinks roughly 3 large glasses of wine.
In the study, the scientists discovered that a small amount of alcohol does not affect our DNA, but once it crosses the five large glasses of wine limit, the alcohol consumption shrinks the telomeres of our chromosomes.
The result showed that 40% of drinkers who consumed more than the limit had some telomere shrinkage caused by alcohol consumption. While 60% of the other people who drank less than the limit had undamaged telomeres.
“This finding suggests that a necessary minimum amount of alcohol consumption is required to damage telomeres,” the researchers write in their study, published in Molecular Psychiatry.
The reason why alcohol affects the telomeres is still unknown, but the study provided a clear and strong observational connection between them. It also shows a possible link between alcohol and Alzheimer’s.
“These findings support the suggestion that alcohol, particularly at excessive levels, directly affects telomere length,” said study lead Dr Anya Topiwala from Oxford Population Health.
The NHS recommends people do not drink more than the limit a week and that this should be spread over at least three days to avoid binge drinking.