GO AHEAD: have that drink. A report in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research found that non-drinkers are more likely to die at a young age than moderate or heavy drinkers. The people who live the longest are the moderate drinkers, followed by the heavy drinkers, and finally followed by the non-drinkers.
We’ve long known that drinking in moderation has health benefits: red wine in particular is known for its heart health benefits, and the social interaction that comes along with alcohol consumption plays an important role in reducing stress and improving one’s quality of life. But the surprise in the study is that even heavy drinkers are less likely to die young than non-drinkers. The study controlled for most of the factors that would explain this away: poorer people, for example, tend to drink less because drinking is expensive, but there are a ton of other health problems with poverty. And many non-drinkers are former problem drinkers, which could already be the cause of health problems.
But both of these factors were controlled for, suggesting that abstaining from drink is legitimately a less healthy life choice than heavy drinking, even though heavy drinking has serious health risks. So the lesson here is that, while you should preferably drink responsibly, you should definitely have the drink regardless. Your life may depend on it.