According to the Wine Pros at winepros.org, if you’ve been concerned about whether drinking wine is a healthy choice, you can lay your worries to rest. Numerous studies have established the health benefits of drinking wine in moderate amounts.
Wine is not only heart-healthy, but it also offers many diverse health benefits that you may not even be aware of.
An alcoholic drink made of grapes and fermented yeast, wine usually consists of water, alcohol, tannins, and acid that help give it a unique flavor and aroma. Although there are multiple varieties of wine, it is primarily categorized as red and white. Red wines usually have a rich taste and velvety finish, while white wines are known for crisp and refreshing palates. Some of the most well-known wines are the Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, and Syrah.
1. Rich in Antioxidants
Antioxidants are compounds that help prevent damage to the cells resulting from inflammation and oxidative stress. Wines, particularly red wine, are rich in antioxidants such as polyphenols, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and the possibility of heart disease.
Moreover, red wine has also been proven to decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease owing to the high concentration of antioxidants. Thus, if you are confused as to which wine to have, don’t hesitate to pick a glass of red wine as it will definitely help boost the antioxidant levels in your blood.
2. Decreases the Risk of Cancer
Other than reducing the risk of inflammation and oxidative stress, the presence of antioxidants in wine is also effective in decreasing the risk of cancer. The grapes used to produce red wine contain resveratrol, a polyphenol, or a plant-based compound that helps protect your cells from damage that can lead to cancer.
However, the presence of resveratrol in wines does not mean that wine drinkers cannot be inflicted with cancer. Resveratrol only helps in reducing the probability of developing cancer. So consuming wine in excess should always be avoided.
3. Good for the Heart
Many studies have shown that the presence of antioxidants in wine has been beneficial in decreasing the risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and other heart-related problems. In addition, people suffering from hypertension have lowered their blood pressure levels thanks to red wine.
However, wine is not only important in preventing hypertension. Research has also proved that both red wine and white wine are beneficial in improving cardiovascular functions, improving glucose and lipid control, helping better functioning of the liver, and repairing endothelial cells that line blood vessels, in turn, providing protection to the heart.
4. Helps Reduce Inflammation
Chronic inflammation is a serious condition that can cause cardiovascular problems, autoimmune diseases, and even cancer. Many foods contain properties that help in reducing inflammation, and wine is one of them. The resveratrol content in wine, which is a chemical compound, has anti-inflammatory properties and several other health benefits.
A study conducted on 4461 adults showed that consumption of wine in moderate amounts led to a reduced inflammatory response. Those who consumed up to 1.4 ounces of red wine per day experienced less inflammation than those who didn’t consume alcohol at all.
5. Increases Life Expectancy
Studies that have been conducted over long periods of time have shown that drinking wine in small amounts can help promote longevity. A recent study also linked Mediterranean diets and wine consumption patterns with increased life expectancy. Those who consume Mediterranean food on a daily basis and drink red wine lived longer and healthier lives than those who abstained.
Another study found that middle-aged men in Italy who consumed up to five glasses of red wine per day lived longer than men who drank less alcohol or didn’t drink at all.
6. Better Lung Health
Although both red wine and white wine help improve the health of the lungs, white wine is known to be more effective. In a study conducted by the University of Buffalo, 1555 subjects were assessed on parameters such as lifetime alcohol consumption, body measurements, lung functions, and lifestyle habits.
The results showed that participants who drank wine on a regular basis had a higher concentration of antioxidants in their bodies compared to those who didn’t drink wine at all. Additionally, this association was higher in those who consumed white wine rather than red wine.
7. Better Renal Health
Although alcohol consumption is said to be bad for the kidneys, drinking red wine in moderate amounts can actually promote better renal health. Research conducted in the past has shown that consuming red wine in small amounts decreases the level of protein in the urine. This, in turn, helps reduce the risk of kidney-related diseases.
It is also said that the process of fermenting the red wine grape along with its skin, seeds, and stems helps keep the minerals and other important chemical compounds intact, which are beneficial in improving renal health.
Wine Improves Cognitive Abilities
8. Better Cognitive Ability
Some scholars have proven that the presence of antioxidants specific to white wine can offer protection against the decline in cognitive abilities. For example, in a study published by the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, researchers took extracts from samples of white wines and fed them to mice over a period of two months.
The experiment was conducted to understand the impact of a diet rich in white wine on the brain and determine how fast or slow neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s progressed. The results showed that the mice who had been fed a white wine-enriched diet had a lower risk of developing problems such as Alzheimer’s.
Red wine, too, has been known to improve cognitive abilities and reduce the risk of problems such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, owing to the presence of antioxidants.
9. Maintains Your Physique
Usually, alcohol consumption is associated with weight gain. However, drinking wine in moderate amounts can actually help you keep your weight in check. The presence of resveratrol in red wine combined with the chemical compound piceatannol helps to reduce the fat cells in the body.
The compound piceatannol speeds up the insulin receptors of the fat cells, thus blocking the path required for immature fat cells to grow. Moreover, resveratrol, which is found in greater concentrations in red wine, has been proved to increase stamina and muscle strength.
10. Improves Mental Health
Wine is not only beneficial in improving cognitive abilities and reducing the risk for neurological diseases but can also improve one’s mental health. Several experiments conducted in the past have shown that drinking a glass of wine in an unpleasant or hostile environment had the same levels of improvement in mood as those who did not drink wine while being in pleasant friendly surroundings. In addition, wine is also beneficial for middle-aged people, as it helps to keep depression away.
Consuming red wine has also been known to be a stress buster. The presence of resveratrol helps to stimulate a protein in the body that activates the genes that can rejuvenate the DNA, thus boosting energy levels and helping to de-stress.
Wine, irrespective of its type, has been known to offer a range of health benefits. It is not only known to be useful in reducing the risk of heart-related problems, kidney diseases, clotting in the arteries, and neurological illnesses, but it also keeps the weight in check, improves mental well-being, and promotes healthy and glowing skin. Nevertheless, just like other alcoholic drinks, wine also should be consumed moderately, to avoid any health issues. With the plethora of health benefits of wine now evident, go ahead and grab that glass of wine. But remember, moderation is key.