If you thought that red wine only tasted good, here is something to feed your mind – red wine can benefit your health as well. When taken moderately, red wine can have a healthy effect on your heart.
Red wine has long been reflected as to provide health benefits, and a good deal of research has also been conducted to prove the assumptions. Rich in antioxidants, red wine is known to cut down on bad cholesterol, prevent artery damage, and reduce the risk of heart diseases. Although there are no clear evidences as yet to how red wine really helps the body, many researchers believe that the constituents in red wine may just be the answer.
Red wine is a rich source of antioxidants such as flavanoid phenolics, and resveratorol. Flavanoids, found in red grapes, are potent antioxidants that can act as cancer preventives. Resveratrol, a naturally occurring antioxidant found in the skin of grapes, is known to prevent blood clots, and reduce bad cholesterol (LDL cholesterol), thus reducing the risk of coronary heart diseases. Research on resveratrol suggests that these substances can reduce stickiness in blood platelets, thus opening the blood vessels, and allowing more flexibility. Resveratrol also restrains the growth of stimulating enzyme responsible for the growth of cancer-cells. However, much of the research regarding the benefits of red wine and resveratrol has been conducted on animals. Resveratrol has shown to decrease obesity and diabetes in mice, both of which constitutes to the development of heart diseases. Studies have also depicted that the resveratrol in red wine may help to reduce inflammation in the immune system, both in the acute and chronic phase.
In addition, resveratrol also helps protecting against the development of Alzheimer’s disease by restraining the growth of the protein that causes the plaque in the Alzheimer patient’s brain. Besides this, reservatrol may aid to slow down the development of dementia as well. Wine is the prime dietary source of resveratrol, and red wine has more amounts of resveratrol than white wine, thus providing more health benefits. Red wine also contains polyphenols, yet another antioxidant, that lowers the blood pressure and stimulates the immune system; it also possesses anti-bacterial properties that can help to inhibit ulcer infections.
Alcohol in itself is beneficial to the body, but only when taken in adequate amounts. Alcohol raises the level of HDL cholesterol (high density lipoprotein), also known as ‘good’ cholesterol, and aids in preventing artery damage caused by ‘bad’ cholesterols. It also reduces the formation of clotting in the blood which can result in artery blockage. Reported heath benefits of red wine include – relieving common cold symptoms and respiratory diseases such as bronchitis; building stronger bones; helping with Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia; reducing obesity, and aiding longer lives.
Red wine is recognized to work as a calming agent as well. A glass of red wine presumably relaxes the mind and reduces stress, thus helping the body to cope with diseases quickly and effectively. However, any alcohol, including red wine, can become addictive, so it is important to limit the intake to a glass (about 5 ounces) or two everyday. Excessive drinks may result in high blood pressure, liver diseases, migraine, and a number of other side effects. Alcohol consumption is also discouraged for pregnant women, as it may cause harm to the fetus inside.
Nevertheless, adequate amount of red wine is beneficial to the body, and there is no doubt to that. So the next time you enjoy your glass of wine, reflect upon the benefits it provides to your body, and it may just deepen the pleasure of the whole drinking experience!