Excess of alcohol is bad, this we know. But in this case, even abstinence is not good for your health. A study done by the researchers at the Aging Research Centre, Karolinska Institute, Sweden in 2004 showed that people who drank a moderate amount of alcohol during the course of their lives had a lesser risk of having dementia than those who drank high quantities or none at all.
The study was done during the course of 23 years on 2000 randomly selected individuals, aged between 65-79 years. It was found that there was a connection between the amount of alcohol consumption done by each individual during their lives and its relationship to dementia in old age and cognitive impairment.
The study concluded by stating that the occurrence of dementia in people was highly based on the presence of a class of proteins, called apolipoprotein e4 allele. The presence of this protein is necessary for the occurrence of dementia and the study was done with the individuals who had this allele. The results showed that the individuals who drank alcohol on a regular basis and the ones who did not drink at all during their midlife had a higher chance of suffering from mild cognitive impairment than those who consumed acceptable amounts of liquor. Similarly, in the case of dementia, alcohol showed a U shaped relationship, meaning heavy drinkers or no drinkers have a higher risk of dementia later in their lives in comparison to light or moderate drinkers, where alcohol had a protective effect.
However, the data collected proves that excessive drinking has severe effects on the brain and it does not encourage people to start drinking in the belief that it might save them from dementia or cognitive disorders.