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For more information, go to www.arthritisresearchuk.org

Alcoholic drinks

I came across a letter in an old edition of Arthritis Today from someone who had experienced an anti-inflammatory effect from drinking champagne. I believe there's definitely something in this as I too find my joints (especially my knees) are less swollen after drinking alcohol.

I thought it was the dehydrating effect of the alcohol itself but now I'm left wondering if it's in fact the polyphenols which are found in the grapes. I've had inflammatory arthritis since the age of three. I don't take any second-line drugs since having an ulcer, and as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) stopped me ovulating I no longer take these. So I am always looking for an effective alternative. Currently I take plant isoflurance or plant oestrogens, but have also read that green tea may help?

I think more research should go into the effect of wine/champagne and also statins.
Zoe Harber, Haverhill, Suffolk

Editor’s Note: Although we have no immediate plans to investigate the beneficial effects of champagne or wine on arthritis, we're co-funding a £1 million trial with the British Heart Foundation to find out if more people with rheumatoid arthritis would be at reduced risk of developing cardiovascular disease by taking statins.

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