Osteoporosis tends to occur in post-menopausal women, with the condition making bones more brittle and easier to damage as a result of lower density.
While our bones stop growing at around the age of 18, bones continue to increase in density until we are in our late-20s.
However, from about the age of 35, density begins to lower again as a result of the aging processes, making us more susceptible to fractures.
New research published in the journal Menopause suggests moderate alcohol consumption could reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
The study, approved by the International Scientific Forum on Alcohol Research, examined the bone density levels of 40 post-menopausal women with an average age of 56.
They consumed 19g of alcohol per day while researchers kept track of their bone density.
When the participants stopped drinking, it was noticed that their bone turnover was “excessive”, meaning there was an imbalance between the formation and breakdown of bone.
The production of new bone alongside a rapid depletion in old bone makes them weaker; however, when the participants began to drink again it was shown that the balance was improved.
“Abstinence from alcohol resulted in increased markers of bone turnover (hence, higher risk of developing osteoporosis), whereas resumption of alcohol consumption reduced bone turnover markers,” the study authors wrote.
Still, Sarah Leyland, a spokeswoman for the National Osteoporosis Society, warned of the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption.
She said: “Moderate amounts of alcohol might be beneficial for bones, but excessive alcohol increases the risk of fractures, as well as increasing the risk of falls.”
So women aiming for the perfect bikini body this summer should stick to the national guidelines on alcohol, which is the equivalent of a single 175ml glass of wine per day.