The next time someone offers you a glass of wine, be grateful – it could save you from the agony of arthritis.
Women who indulge in moderate drinking halve the risk of certain forms of the illness, researchers have found.
Swedish academics found that women who drank at least three medium-sized glasses of wine a week – or the equivalent in beer or spirits – were up to 52 per cent less likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis.
Around 400,000 Britons are affected by this type of arthritis and the majority are women, aged 40 to 70.
It causes pain and swelling in the hands, wrists and feet and can make everyday tasks almost impossible.
Currently doctors are unable to prevent or cure the illness and they can only offer treatment to alleviate pain.
The illness is caused by the body’s own immune system – which normally fights infection – attacking the cells lining the joints.
Scientists believe that alcohol can counter this process because it lowers the body’s immune response.
But they have not been able to establish whether drinking more alcohol reduces the risk even further.
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(From The Moderate Voice )