The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition recently published a study conducted by the University of East Anglia and Kings College London which found that moderate wine consumption led to a slight increase in spinal bone mineral density. The study was partially funded by Arthritis Research UK and compared 1000 pairs of female twins with similar lifestyles in their mid-50’s in Britain. The study of the post-menopausal women involved an examination on their food and drink consumption, and measurement of the bone density levels (bone strength) in their hip joints, spines and femurs.
After evaluating the comparative results with the women who did not drink, the study showed that a glass of wine a day helps strengthen the bones and reduce the risk of osteoporosis in the spine. Although it isn’t entirely clear why this is true, it is thought that it could be related to the phytochemicals found in wine. Osteoporosis is a bone-thinning disease that makes bones brittle and that affects approximately three million people in the UK alone. The risk increases with age, but women [especially post menopausal] are four times more likely to develop the condition than men. While they discovered that moderate amounts of wine can boost bone mineral density, they also found that other alcoholic drinks such as beer and liquor do not possess the same benefits. Joyously for us, the concluding result was that “Wine intake was positively associated with spine bone mineral density”.