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How does alcohol affect blood cholesterol?

The ethanol in booze, in all its forms (wine, beer, harder stuff) increases good HDL cholesterol, discourages blood clots, and keeps your arteries young. But moderation is the key -- that's no more than 1 drink per day for the ladies, 2 for the gents. One "drink" equals 5 ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, or 1.5 ounces (one shot) of 80-proof spirits. Sip more than that, and the health benefits of alcohol start to disappear.

Ozgen Dogan
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
It's generally believed that alcohol is beneficial to the heart. Alcohol increases good cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein (HDL)), but it also increases the ugly cholesterol (triglycerides), blood sugar and blood pressure. Excessive drinking may weaken the heart muscle. And because it stimulates the appetite, drinking before meals may lead to overeating and weight gain. Although alcohol has some positive health benefits, it can also have harmful effects. It shouldn't be used for the treatment of high cholesterol.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.