It’s often assumed that if you abstain from drinking that you’re a much healthier, cleaner and overall better specimen of a human being, but the latest stats seem to contradict this view as they’ve suggested that teetotallers actually take way more sick days than people that drink all the time.
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The research was conducted by UCL and looked at workers in France, Finland and the UK, specifically women who drank up to 11 units of alcohol and men who drank up to 34. It was discovered that moderate drinkers had the best health and that those that didn’t drink at all were the least likely to be absent from a range of illnesses including mental health issues, muscle and stomach issues.
Sadly though, it doesn’t look like this is another excuse for those after work beers as the researchers are saying it’s likely that people don’t drink because of their ill health, rather than the other way round. What a cop out. Here’s what Dr James Doidge, senior research associate at UCL says:
This study showed that people who abstain from alcohol are absent more often than people who consume alcohol in moderation.
The most plausible explanation for this is reverse causality: health problems cause people to drink less, and not the other way around.
The best evidence we have on the effects of alcohol consumption comes from genetic studies which, sadly, indicate that any level of alcohol consumption increases your risk of health problems.
Seriously lame. This verdict was echoed by Dr James Nicholls, director of research and policy development at Alcohol Research UK, who said the following about the study’s conclusions:
(The research) doesn’t capture short-term impacts on work, such as absence, or reduced productivity, due to hangovers.
While the findings don’t provide evidence that “alcohol is good for you”, they do suggest drinking moderately is not likely to lead to missing work through illness.
I mean at least there’s that – we can enjoy those after work drinks with the knowledge that it isn’t going to make us lose any work time. Not really sure if that’s a benefit though as most people probably drink to forget about work, not so that they can definitely get in on time for it. Bit of a conundrum there.
For more of the same, check out this other study that says that drinking alcohol makes you crave cocaine. That isn’t so good.