he team of psychiatrists behind the study said: "This is the first study investigating the impact of the type of preferred beverage on brain-volume shrinkage in patients with alcohol dependence" quoted as saying in the Daily Mail. The study compared brain scans from diagnosed alcoholics with those from healthy adults. In non-alcoholics the hippocampus was 3.85ml. In beer drinkers it was 3.4ml, in spirit drinkers 2.9ml and for wine drinkers it was the smallest, just 2.8ml. Moderate wine drinking has been linked to a host of health benefits, including reducing cholesterol and high blood pressure. Resveratol, a molecule found in the skin of red grapes, has been associated with health benefits including a reduced risk of heart disease, strokes and cancers.
But research in the International Journal of Cancer last year claimed just one glass of wine a day could increase the risk of bowel cancer by 10 per cent, and over-consumption of any alcohol can lead to increased risk of kidney and liver disease, long-term brain damage and organ failure.