London: While it is said an apple a day can keep the doctor away, a new study has suggested a couple of glasses of wine a day for middle-aged women to keep diseases at bay.
A major study, which was launched in 1976, and involved 14,000 female nurses found the women, who took alcohol regularly throughout the week instead of on any single occasion, benefited the most.
The study has shown that by drinking between 15.1 gm and 30gm of alcohol a day - as much as two shots of spirits or nearly three small glasses of wine - women can improve their odds of "successful ageing" by 28 percent, a newspaper reported.
The US scientists behind the study have defined "successful ageing" as living to at least 70, being free of cancer, heart conditions and other chronic diseases, and suffering no significant mental or physical impairment.
Study authors, led by Qi Sun, from the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, found that moderate drinking had "profound" positive effects on the body, reducing inflammation, cholesterol and other harmful processes.
Compared with non-drinkers, women who drank 5.1 to 15 grams of alcohol a day had a 19 percent greater likelihood of successful ageing. Those who drank 15.1 to 30 grams increased their odds by 28 percent, but those who had more reduced the benefits.