New UK drinking guidelines are casting doubt on claims that red wine protects the heart.

For years we've been told that one or two glasses a day prevent heart disease. Red wine is thought to contain antioxidants which slow the ageing process and relax blood vessels.

But the latest advice states it may only be beneficial to women over 55 - not to men. And even then this only applies if it is drunk in small amounts.

The guidance also points out there may not be any benefit at all. Studies have shown Britons who drink small amounts live longer than teetotallers. But this may be explained by them being wealthier and in better health.


The UK Department of Health said researchers at Sheffield University analysed a number of studies showing alcohol only protected the hearts of women over 55. Even so, this was only for small amounts - less than one unit a day - and they could not be certain it wasn't due to other reasons such as women drinkers being wealthier and in overall better health.

- Daily Mail