Beer=Fountain of Youth!

Two beers a day and a few excess pounds
are the secret to living longer, scientists say

When it comes to making it into your 90's, booze actually beats exercise, according to a long-term study. Drinking two beers or two glasses of wine a day slashes your risk of dying young by a fifth, new research suggests. Also carrying a few excess pounds in later life makes an early death 3 per cent less likely.

A daily routine that includes two cups of coffee and regular exercise also reduced premature deaths. American researchers say even moderate exercise, such as a brisk walk, will do.

Two hours of non-sporting hobbies reduce the risk of an early death further, by 21 percent. These activities include gardening, reading, board games, and crafts.

The boffins analysed data on 14,000 people aged 55 to 100 to find the secrets to a long life. They have tracked the volunteers for up to 37 years, with some still being monitored.

Research leader Professor Claudia Kawas who specializes in neurology, warned a long life was not necessarily disease free, but a couple of drinks in moderation throughout the week does seem to prolong life.

“I have no explanation for it, but I do firmly believe that modest drinking improves longevity,” Kawas stated over the weekend at the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual conference in Austin, Texas.

Researchers discovered that subjects who drank about two glasses of beer or wine a day were 18% less likely to experience a premature death than those who abstained from alcohol, the Independent reports.

The study revealed that alcohol is more harmful to the brain than marijuana. Meanwhile, in contrast to baked couch potatoes, participants who exercised 15 to 45 minutes a day, cut the same risk by 11%.

Kawas said: “People should try to incorporate as many of these habits into their day to give themselves the best chance of living to a ripe age.

“But adopting this healthy lifestyle does not guarantee that these extra years will be healthy ones.

“Our data shows none of these lifestyle factors make any difference to the likelihood you will develop dementia - we are still trying to find them.”

Other factors were found to boost longevity, including weight. Participants who were slightly overweight — but not obese — cut their odds of an early death by 3%, compared to subjects who were normal or underweight.

Professor Kawas, from the University of California, added: “As you get to 60 or 70 physiologically it’s a good thing to gain weight.

“It is best to gain between five and 10 pounds per decade. Underweight people had a 50 percent increase in mortality.

“It’s not bad to be skinny when you’re young but it’s very bad to be skinny when you’re old,” Kawas noted in her address.

The findings were presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Further study is needed to determine how habits impact longevity beyond people’s genetic makeups. In the meantime, have a beer or a glass of wine — or both!