According to a new study, heavy drinkers outlive nondrinkers. Their sample was 55-65 year-olds who had had some kind of recent outpatient care. They followed them for 20 years.
But even after controlling for nearly all imaginable variables — socioeconomic status, level of physical activity, number of close friends, quality of social support and so on — the researchers a six-member team led by psychologist Charles Holahan of the University of Texas at Austin found that over a 20-year period, mortality rates were highest for those who had never been drinkers, second-highest for heavy drinkers and lowest for moderate drinkers.
One possible explanation is that non-drinkers are likely to be less social and more depressed.