Alcohol May Not Be Kind to the Aging Brain: Studies suggest potential problems, like memory issues, but don't prove a link. Past research has suggested that a glass or two of wine -- or another form of alcohol -- each evening may lower your risk of dementia in old age. But two new studies challenge that theory by suggesting that you might actually harm your brain by changing your drinking habits in later life -- or drinking heavily. The studies aren't conclusive, and it's possible that alcohol consumption wasn't a cause of the mental problems but instead a sign that they exist: People who begin to have trouble thinking and remembering clearly may simply be more likely to drink, the study authors said. Still, the findings raise questions about the existing assumption that a bit of alcohol is good for the aging mind.