People who drink some alcohol three or four days a week are the least likely to become diabetic—even compared to those who never drink. And red wine seemed to have the greatest protective effect of all the alcoholic drinks, possibly because it's rich in polyphenols that help manage blood-sugar levels.
Drinking moderately three or four days a week reduces the risk of diabetes by 27 per cent in men and 32 per cent in women compared to others who drink less frequently—or those who drink substantially more—and the amount you drink also seems to have an effect, with those drinking seven or more glasses of wine a week seeing their risk reduce by up to 30 per cent.
Beer also has a protective effect, but less so than wine, with those drinking up to six beers a week reducing their risk by 21 per cent.
Although drinking spirits had no effect in men, it increased the risk of diabetes by 83 per cent in women, say researchers from the University of Southern Denmark, who analysed the drinking habits and risk of diabetes among a group of 70,551 participants over a five-year period.