Abstaining, Nursing Homes & Mortality

A major Australian study has found that abstainers were twice as likely to enter a nursing home as people who were moderate drinkers. The 14-year study on elderly tracked the hospital and nursing admissions of nearly 3,000 residents of Dubbo, New South Wales.

The protective effect of moderate drinking applied equally to both men and women and regardless of alcohol beverage (wine, spirits, or beer) consumed.

The study also found that fewer of the drinkers than abstainers died during the study and that they spent less time in hospitals.


  • McCallum, J., et al. The Dubbo Study of the Health of the Elderly 1988-2002: An Epidemiological Study of Hospitaol and Residential Care. Sydney, NSW, Australia: The Australian Health Policy Institute, 2003.

Filed Under: Longevity