New advice for type 2 Diabetics: Drink wine

A two-year study on wine's health effects reveals potential benefits for abstainers who begin drinking moderately.


Until now, various studies have shown the health benefits of moderate alcohol consumption. Also, there are some contradictory studies that caution users just because wine was shown to have a certain health benefit in a particular study.

In a new study by Ben-Gurion University on wine and type 2 diabetes suggests that those with the disease might experience benefits if they switch from abstention to moderate drinking, with evidence to back up the claim.

The study involved 224 participants with type 2 diabetes who previously abstained from alcohol. Scientists instructed them to drink a glass of either red wine, white wine or water each day, and follow a Mediterranean diet.

Authors noted, “Although several … studies demonstrated protective associations between moderate drinking and cardiovascular disease, atherosclerosis, hypertension, certain types of cancer, type 2 diabetes, neurological disorders, and metabolic syndrome, no conclusive recommendations exist regarding moderate wine consumption. Here, we … suggest that initiating moderate alcohol consumption among well-controlled persons with type 2 diabetes is apparently safe.”

They point to two key substudies of the trial that show this conclusion. One substudy, as recently detailed, uncovers that wine was shown to slow the progression of atherosclerosis in diabetics. The second substudy focused on heart rate variability (HRV), or the variety in the time interval between heartbeats.

As the study’s text notes: “Although both the American Diabetes Association and the American Heart Association discuss moderate alcohol consumption in their guidelines, a conclusive recommendation is not given, [nor is] a recommendation to initiate moderate intake.” This research might help change that.”

The paper, published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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