I fully agree that while alcoholism and binge drinking can have wide-ranging health and social effects, moderate consumption of alcohol can be beneficial to health ("Review alcohol 'sin tax' but not for tobacco"; last Friday).
Wine, especially the red variety, has been studied extensively over many years, with impressive findings suggesting that it may promote a longer lifespan, protect against certain cancers, improve mental health and provide benefits to the heart.
As the article pointed out, moderate drinkers of any form of alcohol are less likely to develop an array of disorders that may lead to heart disease and diabetes.
Red wine has anti-cancer properties due to the antioxidant resveratrol present in it, and also has the potential to protect against Alzheimer's disease.
I am a middle-income earner and a moderate drinker of red wine. But now, the steep increase in the price of alcohol has caused me to refrain from purchasing it as I feel the pinch in my wallet.
Raising alcohol taxes by 25 per cent can discourage heavy drinkers, but it also penalises moderate drinkers to their serious disadvantage.
I hope the Government can review the tax to be levied on alcohol and differentiate it from that of cigarettes, as it is not right to categorise both as vices.
-May Ting Lai Mui (Ms)
This article was first published on JULY 7, 2014.
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