A new study of male professionals suggests that a drink of alcohol a day cuts the risk of heart attack by as much as 50 per cent.
Even more disturbing, out of 100 heart attacks amongst a group of 9,000 professionals, as many as 25 may have been the result of not drinking.
The study is a valiant attempt to tease out whether alcohol really is good for the heart or not. It's in the Archives of Internal Medicine this week and all the men studied had really healthy lifestyles, daily exercise and diets of fruit vegs, fish and chicken. But what is not clear is whether the researchers took account of the reasons why men do not drink.
For instance I have had to give up alcohol because, combined with antihistamines, it knocks me out. So if I want to drink I have to not take an antihistamine for 24 hours - as I did at the weekend. No chance, then, of a daily drink.
But if I were to suffer a heart attack, God forbid, it would not be because I don't drink, most likely. It would be because of the inflammation caused by the allergy.
So it may be that many non-drinkers are non-drinkers because of some other underlying health concern.