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Women Who Drink Beer Less Prone to Develop Rheumatoid Arthritis

iStock/Thinkstock(BOSTON) -- Ladies, here’s a toast to quaffing an occasional beer. It can save you a lot of pain down the road.

That’s according to Dr. Bing Lu, who teaches at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Lu says that women can reduce their chances of developing rheumatoid arthritis, which begins as early as the 20s, by drinking alcohol in moderation.

Tracking the drinking habits of women from two large studies that began in 1976 and 1989, respectively, Lu found that those who enjoyed a few alcoholic beverages per week cut their risk of rheumatoid arthritis by 21 percent. But the risk went down by 31 percent when they only drank beers.

As for the reasons why, Lu and his team were at a loss to explain beer's and alcohol’s effects on the body that would lessen the development of rheumatoid arthritis, which is primarily a woman's disease.

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