Bloomberg | Mar 23, 2016,
It's an irresistible headline: People who drink alcohol in moderation actually live longer than those who abstain entirely. However, a study has shown the fact suffers from a big flaw: The "abstainers" category includes people who used to drink but have stopped. They may be inherently less healthy, than people who drink in moderation. That doesn't mean that drinking in moderation causes people to live longer.
Researchers at University of Victoria in British Columbia examined 87 studies on the relationship between alcohol and mortality that involved nearly four million people. Only 13 of them strictly separated life-long non-drinkers from people who used to drink or those who imbibe occasionally. Analysing the studies that were free from "abstainer bias" showed no significant benefits for moderate drinkers compared to lifetime abstainers.
And when they compared moderate drinkers with tho…