The Benefits of Drinking Red Wine
Is drinking red wine beneficial?
Besides tasting divine, there are, surprisingly for some, quite a few health benefits associated with drinking red wine.
Now, when we say drinking, there is a very fine line of difference between drinking in moderation and drinking excessively. Consuming alcohol in excess can lead to health implications and negatively impact your physical and mental wellbeing.
If you already drink red wine (we don’t recommend starting if you don’t), drinking in moderation means:
- Up to one drink a day for women 150ml (5fl) = 1 drink
- Up to two and a half drinks a day for men 450ml (15fl) = 2.5 drinks
5 Health Benefits of Red Wine
- High in Polyphenols
Darker grapes are rich in polyphenols, which are potent antioxidants. Polyphenols are also known as reducing agents. Together with other antioxidants (carotenoids, vitamin C, vitamin E), help protect the tissues in our body against oxidative stress (an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants). Studies show that consuming polyphenols such as Resveratrol (found in the skin of grapes) may also help protect us against associated pathologies such as inflammation, coronary heart disease and cancers.
- Helps decrease blood pressure
Thanks to the presence of these polyphenols, consuming red wine has been shown to decrease the blood pressure of hypertensive patients.
- Reduces the risk of diabetes
A Study showed that women with a higher antioxidant intake were at a lower risk of diabetes, with regular red wine drinkers being the lowest risk.
- Reduces the risk of cancer
Not all red wines are made equal. A test was conducted to determine which type of wine is richest in polyphenols. The richest in trans-resveratrol (polyphenols with anti-inflammatory properties that protect against diseases like cancer)were Pinot noir and St. Laurent red wines. The daily dosage of these two types of red wine that reduced cancer risk was 300ml for men and around 200ml for women.
- Has positive effects on the digestive system
The polyphenols found in wine act as free radical scavengers and probiotics and can prevent or delay the progression of inflammatory bowel disease of the colon and small intestine [67,68].
Although moderate red wine consumption has many benefits, it’s also important to remember that excessive drinking has been known to negatively impact health and cause implications that can be life-threatening.
Consuming too much alcohol increases the risk of:
- Certain types of cancer
- Heart failure
- High blood pressure
- Liver and pancreas diseases
- Weight gain and obesity
It’s also crucial to avoid alcohol entirely if you:
- Are pregnant
- Have a personal or strong family history of alcohol use disorder
- Have a liver or pancreas disease associated with alcohol use
- Have heart failure or a weak heart
- Take certain medications