A young person looks at Dementia - and alcohol

Published on Read in 3 minutes mins

Katie's Column
In my profile picture I'm enjoying a "mocktail".  It looks like a strong drink, but it is juice. It is a known fact that alcohol consumption can be dangerous and is the catalyst for many deadly diseases such as cancer. However, there is many a debate as to whether dementia can be brought on with a regular glass of wine. I've just read an article (https://theconversation.com/te...)   that refers to a study with surprising findings.   Apparently those who drank in moderation were at the lowest risk of developing dementia. This contrasts to the perception of alcohol we have – that it may actually save your brain from deterioration rather than cause it. It was also mentioned that a teetotal lifestyle may promote dementia. However, it was clear that drinking to excess did not help to reduce chances of developing dementia and only increased them. 
But how accurate are these findings? It is hard to pinpoint when alcohol is at the route of dementia with many other factors having an impact on diagnosis. For example, the ‘teetotal’ members in the study may have other health problems like heart disease which could be a contributing factor, which the article outlines, or they could have started drinking later on in life out with the research period. This makes it challenging to come to a final conclusion. With more resources and knowledge in 2018 about dementia, this study (which started more than thirty years ago) could be repeated with a hope that clearer results could be collated. As life expectancy is increasing, there is much more of an opportunity to explore the unclear link between alcohol and dementia and in the near future we could have an idea of the impact alcohol really has.
What do you think?