Red wine is known for adding flavor and taste to various dishes. It is used in preparation of different pastas, salads and non-vegetarian dishes. Red wines impart specific taste and aroma to the food. But red wine is also a popular drink for its many health benefits. Drinking a glass or two of red wine can actually lower your risk of acquiring many diseases.
Health Benefits of Red Wine
It was observed that people in specific regions of France had very low statistics in cases of heart attacks despite consuming a calorie-rich diet. Studies revealed that their healthy hearts could be a result of drinking red wine which is a part of their dinner every night. Medical science has established a link between red wine and good health. As long as the wine is had in moderation it will make the body and heart stronger.
Let’s Look At Some Of The Health Benefits That Are Generally Associated With Drinking Red Wine.
Red wine is high in anti-oxidants that are the major reason for the many health benefits wine has. Anti-oxidants are molecule compounds present in the body that help fight the damaging free radicals that are found in the environment as well as in an individual’s body. Red wine has a combination of some of the best anti-oxidants that help prevent various physical and mental illnesses in human beings. According to medical research, antioxidants significantly lower the risk of diseases such as cancer, diabetes, macular degeneration and even heart conditions. Hence drinking red wine in moderation can actually prevent a variety of diseases.
The skin and the seed of red grape contain the antioxidant – resveratrol. During the process of making red wine, the red grapes are fermented along with their skin and seeds. This imparts high level of resveratrol to the wine. This specific antioxidant has been proven to prevent development of a few types of cancers. The antioxidant protects the body against any DNA mutation that could cause cancer. Resveratrol also keeps the new cells from turning cancerous.
The antioxidant has many benefits for the heart as well; it cuts down on the chances of heart diseases, heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular diseases. Resveratrol has the ability to keep the blood thin. This prevents the blood from clogging the arteries, thus keeping the heart healthy. The anti-oxidant also lowers the levels of low-density lipoprotein or LDL. This is the ‘bad’ cholesterol which can cause accumulation of plaque in the arteries.
The compound resveratrol is also helpful in prevention of a second heart attack if you have already had one. Drinking 150ml of red wine every day will reduce your chances of having a second heart attack. The anti-oxidant raises the level of HDL (or ‘good’ cholesterol) in the body thus protecting the heart against strokes and attacks.
According to some recent studies, the compound resveratrol can protect the brain from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Resveratrol protects the body against inflammation of various kinds. Inflammation is the main reason for many physical ailments, diseases and infections in the body.
Resveratrol is not the fountain of life but this anti-oxidant can help you live longer by keeping your body healthy.
A new research has shown that red wine is rich source of melatonin. Red wines like merlot, Chianti and Cabernet Sauvignon contain melatonin in high amounts. This chemical helps keep the body clock in check; this means that drinking a glass of wine an hour before your bedtime will help you sleep better.
Melatonin is again an anti-oxidant that has anti-aging properties. So drinking red wine can actually keep those wrinkles, crow’s feet and even fine lines in check. Many beauty salons these days offer red wine facial treatments that are targeted at aging skin. The anti-oxidant melatonin is also known for reducing the risk of breast cancer in women. However, women need to be very careful while drinking red wine; more than two glasses during the day can actually lead to breast cancer.
Melatonin helps the body fight against the radicals responsible for causing lung cancer. Drinking a glass of wine actually cuts down on lung cancer risk by 13%. In men, melatonin reduces the risk of prostate cancer. Four or five glasses of red wine in a week can significantly lower the risk of prostate cancer by almost 50%. In fact, drinking wine during prostate cancer will prevent the cancer from becoming terminal.
Melatonin builds immunity in the body and makes the immune system stronger. A strong immune system helps the body fight viruses that cause infections like cold and cough. Drinking 50ml of red wine every day considerably reduces the chances of developing cold.
Drinking Wine in Moderation
Red wine has many health benefits and protects us against heart attacks, cancer and various other ailments. However, the only way you can actually benefit from red wine is by drinking it in moderation. Overindulging in red wine simply because you like the taste or because you have become an addict can prove to be extremely harmful for your health.
Excessive drinking of wine is considered alcohol abuse and you are risking yourself to many serious health issues like high blood pressure, weight gain, osteoporosis, liver cirrhosis and cancers of breast, liver, mouth and esophagus. If you overindulge in drinking of wine you gain zilch for your health. At the end of the day red wine will become equivalent to a can of Pepsi or coca cola – an empty calories drink without any health benefits.
Hence moderation is the key to drinking red wine. But the term ‘moderation’ needs to be defined although it may differ from place to place and culture to culture. However, the acceptable limit of drinking red wine is two glasses every day for men and one glass for women. Glasses here stand for wine goblets and not beer tumblers! Each drink of red wine should not be more than 4 ounces in quantity. Remember, five ounces of wine contain 120 calories.
So drink to your health!