Health Team

Study: Alcohol may help prevent bone loss

Posted July 13, 2012

There may be new medicine to help prevent bone loss, but it’s not found in pharmacies. Restaurants, bars and ABC liquor stores could hold the key.

Women who want to prevent osteoporosis may want to raise their glass. A new study says drinking a moderate amount of alcohol may help prevent bone loss.

Researchers at Oregon State University studied postmenopausal women who regularly had one or two drinks a day. They found that when the women stopped drinking for two weeks their rates of bone turnover, when bones is lost and replaced, went up.

When the women resumed drinking after two weeks, their rates of bone turnover returned to the previous lower levels. Most of the women in the study drank wine.

The body constantly removes and replaces bone. With osteoporosis, more bone is lost than reformed, resulting in weak bones that are more likely to break.

About 40 million Americans either have osteoporosis or are high risk of getting it. Older women are more affected because estrogen – the hormone that keeps bone replacement in check – decreases after menopause.

Women, like 83-year-old Sandra Crain, say they welcome the study’s findings.

“My friends my age have osteoporosis. It’s very common, and we can all use a bit more wine. Why not?” Crain said.

Researchers warn not to drink too much.

“Excessive alcohol consumption is detrimental to bone health, but in this moderate range it is beneficial,” said study author Urszula Iwaniec.

Eating a healthy diet, taking calcium and exercising also go a long way to keeping bones healthy.


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  • See Chart Jul 18, 2012

    Well , my mom in law is over 95 and drinks a couple of
    glasses of red wine every night, She has had a broken hip
    which repaired unexpectedly fast. Might be something to this
    report, I am wondering if the pill "Reservatrol" made from an active ingredient in wine might do the same thing for bone heath
    with out the tipsy ,not that there is anything wrong with the typsy, wink,wink.

  • VickLo Jul 17, 2012

    Not to worry Godmother. You still have time! Besides, there is nothing wrong with getting a head start.

  • not my real name Jul 17, 2012


  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Jul 16, 2012

    I'm 65, I don't drink and I have very little osteoporosis with my height showing I'm as tall as I was when I entered military service 47 years ago.


  • nashville Jul 16, 2012

    Headed to the likky store right now, for my health of course.

  • kermit60 Jul 16, 2012

    Maybe that's why alcoholics are so hard headed!

  • busyb97 Jul 16, 2012

    No guidance as to what constitutes "too much". ;-).

  • the opinion no one asked for Jul 13, 2012

    let's here it for alcohol...the cause of and solution to all your problems

  • butterscotchbeauty Jul 13, 2012

    Good. So I know I'm on the right track.

  • schlitzmalt Jul 13, 2012

    I'll drink to that!