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Beer, Wine and Spirits. The Good, The Bad and The Confusing

The good news and the bad news just keep on coming.  Browsing the UK Telegraph, we found a story about the good effect of moderate alcohol consumption has on the immune system.

After acknowledging that a glass of red wine can be good for the heart and protect against cancer, scientists at the School of Medicine at the University of California have found that alcohol has protective qualities due to ethanol boosting the effectiveness of vaccinations.


Another story, however, warned against drinking in the sun as alcohol may stop the skin battling harmful UV rays and could lead to the most deadly form of skin cancer (melanoma).  Well, that just spoilt our dreams of getting away from the super cold for some fun in the sun.  Reading on, we discovered that according to Dr. Eva Negri “… in the presence of UV radiation, drinking alcohol can alter the body’s ability to produce a normal immune response.”


Ummm, so if you are not in the sun, alcohol may help the immune system, but venture into the sun and you are in a world of trouble?


However, Cancer Research UK urged caution saying that the study really doesn’t conclude for sure whether alcohol is a risk factor for melanoma.  It might just be sunburn after all.