A former alcohol expert for the World Health Organization claims that alcohol is only bad for you when you consume more than a bottle of wine a day and that abstaining is less healthy than drinking.
Dr. Kari Poikolainen analyzed decades of research on alcohol’s effects on the human body. He claims drinking is only harmful if a person imbibes more than 13 units – equal to four or five pints of beer or more than one bottle of wine, which usually contains about 10 units – in one day.
He also recommends drinking, stating that’s its healthier than abstaining.
“The weight of the evidence shows moderate drinking is better than abstaining and heavy drinking is worse than abstaining – however the moderate amounts can be higher than the guidelines say,” Poikolainen told the Daily Mail.
The recommended daily alcohol intake in the U.S. is 1 to 2 units, not to exceed 14 units in a week.
Poikolainen says that exceeding the recommended daily limit could help people live longer than teetotalers.
Critics say his claims are clearly dangerous.
“This is an unhelpful contribution to the debate. It makes grand claims which we don’t see evidence for,” said Julia Manning of 2020Health. “Alcohol is a toxin, the risks outweigh the benefits.”