Does Red Wine Really Offer Health Benefits?

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Red wine has numerous health benefits when drank in moderation. Below is a list of the ways that red wine improves health and a breakdown of how much red wine is too much.

Benefits of Red Wine

 

Red Wine And Heart Health

Red wine is known for its heart healthy benefits. Likely due to the antioxidant, polyphenol called resveratrol, red wine is believed to prevent heart disease, protect blood vessels in the heart and prevent clots as well.

While the news about red wine is encouraging, experts do not recommend you to start drinking for this reason alone. Those who like wine and drink it already can continue to do so in moderation, but those who don’t, can get resveratrol from foods, like grapes,  cranberries and peanut butter.

In fact, neither the American Heart Association nor the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommend people to start drinking any type of alcohol with the goal of preventing heart disease. Mainly this is due to the fact that alcohol is addicting and in large amounts has seriously adverse health effects.

 

Resveratrol

Resveratrol is a substance commonly found in red wine that is capable of preventing the damage of blood vessels. Resveratrol actually comes from dark purple and blue grapes that are used to make wine, like Pinot Noir. The substance is also believed to lower LDL levels, which is the bad cholesterol, and helps prevent blood clots.

Research on resveratrol has only been done on animals, such as mice, so the effects are not exactly helpful to human beings. For example, a study showed that resveratrol is capable of preventing diabetes and obesity in mice. Now if you were to apply that study to humans, someone would have to drink around 1,000 liters of red wine each day to achieve the same effect. That is just not realistic.

Still many experts agree that moderate amounts of any type of alcohol can help reduce risks of heart disease and include these benefits:

  • Raises the good (HDL) cholesterol
  • Reduces the formation of blood clots
  • Helps to prevent arterial damage caused by bad cholesterol
  • Produces changes in blood pressure
  • Lower Cholesterol

Many experts believe that red wine in moderation is capable of increasing the good HDL cholesterol level in the body by 20%, which helps to prevent heart disease. However, it is important to note that the increase in HDL levels goes hand in hand with a healthy diet and regular physical activity. Without those two components, the good cholesterol could quickly turn bad.

 

Good For The Brain

Although a bit surprising, red wine actually has some important benefits for the brain. A few studies have been conducted to test this theory and all of them have yielded a similar result. Women who drink a glass of red wine with dinner showed higher brain function than those who donít drink at all.

This may go without saying, but drinking more than one or two glasses of red wine with dinner and getting a little tipsy does more harm than good to the brain. Itís all about moderation.

 

Get Rid Of A Cold

Red wine is actually great for getting rid of that common cold. The antioxidants in red wine protect cells from free radicals and help fight infection.

Studies show that drinking 1-2 glasses of wine per day help decrease the chances of getting sick. In fact, those who drink 14 glasses of wine per week are 40% less likely to get sick!

 

Drink Sizes

What does moderation look like? One drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits.

One or two glasses with a meal are a great way to maintain a healthy diet and a healthy body!

 

Conclusion

So yes, red wine does have some health benefits on the heart, but that does not mean you should drink a whole bottle of wine in one sitting!

Clearly red wine does have its health benefits, but alcohol is a very addictive substance and should be consumed in moderation with a meal, no more than 2 drinks per night.

Also, it is important to keep in mind that an overall heart smart diet along with cardio exercise is more effective as a whole to keep the heart healthy, and alcohol is just an added component.

 

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