Booze Makes You Age Faster Alcohol damages cells that lead to aging, cancer By Kevin Spak, Newser Staff Posted Apr 22, 2010 12:26 PM CDT 20 comments Comments The sad part? These guys are like 43. (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Geezerdom could be just a few pints away, according to a new study from Italy. Alcohol damages cells that have been linked to both premature aging and cancer, the research shows. “Heavy alcohol users tend to look haggard” for a reason, the lead researcher tells the Daily Telegraph. “It is commonly thought heavy drinking leads to premature aging and earlier onset of diseases of aging.” The researchers studied more than 250 subjects who had similar ages, diets, environments and exercise habits, but very different drinking patterns; some imbibed as many as four drinks a day. In the drinkers, they found dramatically shorter telomeres—the parts on the ends of DNA strands that prevent them from unraveling, a little like the end of a shoelace.