While most of us will agree that drinking wine relaxes our mind and brings smiles to our faces, many of us also wonder about its health benefits.
For many years, researchers from all over the world have found that a moderate wine consumption might be good for you. But how exactly does it contribute to your health ?
It contains antioxidants
Antioxidants are naturally found in fruits, vegetables, tea and even chocolate. They help prevent cell damage in your body. Antioxidants in red wine are found in the skin of the grapes and are called polyphenols.
One specific polyphenol found in the grape’s skin is called resveratrol and is one substance in red wine that has gotten the most attention for its health benefits.
Resveratrol is found mostly in red wines made from grapes with thick skin (Syrah, Cabernet sauvignon), but also in red wines made from thin-skinned grapes like Pinot Noir, as well as in white wines.
It could promote longevity
Researchers from Harvard Medical School found that resveratrol activates a protein that acts as an anti-aging agent. It was also found to protect against free radicals, which are a big contributor to skin’s wrinkles.
Grape antioxidants are used to make skin treatment products in France
It might help to explain why Mediterranean countries (Italy, Spain, France, Greece) stand among the highest life expectancies in the world (all above 80 years old), since wine is an important part of the diet in those regions.
It may reduce the risk of heart disease
A study from the Israel Institute of Technology found that a consumption of red wine enhanced blood vessel cell health, improving blood flow. This could help increase the health of the heart, while lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Beware, while light to moderate consumption may be good in preventing a stroke, heavy drinkers are more likely to have the opposite effect, resulting in a higher risk of heart attacks.
Sometimes, you have to say "no"
It does seem that a moderate consumption of wine, for example one glass per day, is indeed healthy. However, wine's benefits on health are not clear and research is still ongoing.
Be careful, too much alcohol can have many harmful effects on your body. But if you already enjoy a glass of red wine with your evening meal, drinking it in moderation appears to help your heart.
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