Grapes, grapes, the magical fruit, the more you drink, the more you, well, improve your life and overall health, researchers say! See the list below to find out how your favorite vino can do more than just pair greatly with your dinner.
14 Health Benefits of Wine
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions about your medical condition and current medication. Do not disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking advice or treatment because of something you have read here. Some of these studies are conducted on animals and do not necessarily affect humans in the same way. The adverse effects of excessive alcohol consumption can overshadow the positive ones, so it’s advised that you drink only in moderation.
1. Reduces Vascular Risk
Research shows that low-to-moderate consumption of wine (up to 150mL daily) may help protect against vascular diseases (e.g., coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease) by keeping your blood vessels healthy. To reap the full benefits, it also helps to live a relatively healthy lifestyle and have a good diet.
2. Benefits People with Type 2 Diabetes
In this two-year study, patients with controlled type 2 diabetes (i.e. patients already on medication) had about a five-ounce serving of red or white wine every night with dinner. Coupled with a Mediterranean diet and no calorie restrictions, researchers noticed improvements in high-density lipoproteins, good cholesterol, and glucose metabolism.
3. Reduces the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
In addition to aiding people with diabetes, research shows that moderate wine consumption (6-48g per day) can also lessen your chances of getting type 2 diabetes. The results suggest that those who moderately consume alcohol reduce the risk of getting type 2 diabetes by about a 30%.
4. Fights the Common Cold
Five Spanish universities conducted a study to examine whether drinking spirits, beer, or wine could put you at risk of getting a cold. Contrary to beer and spirits, researchers found that wine (especially red wine) interestingly had an opposite effect and suggested that it could potentially protect you from the common cold.
5. Lessens Chances of Liver Disease
This study examined the effects of wine on people with coronary heart disease, who tend to be at risk for a non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Researchers found that moderate wine drinkers were about 50% less likely to develop liver disease(s).
6. Promotes Mental Health
Participants (aged 50 to 80) of this seven-year study began with no alcohol-related problems nor history of depression. Researchers found that those who drank about five to fifteen grams of alcohol daily were less likely to suffer from depression. It’s important to note, though, that drinking over seven glasses a week would increase your risk of depression.
7. Stops Fat Cells
Piceatannol is a compound that you can find in wine (via grape seeds and skin) which can apparently block fat cells from developing. Researchers found that piceatannol binds to immature fat cells’ insulin receptors. Through this process, piceatannol blocks the pathways that immature fat cells require to grow.
8. Fights Food Poisoning
In one study, researchers gave a model stomach wine. They discovered that the wine killed cells of a bacteria species in the same genus as a pathogen associated with a form of food poisoning called Listeriosis.
9. Has Anti-Aging Properties
Research has shown that resveratrol, which is a chemical produced in grapes, contains anti-aging properties. Results have confirmed, reports David Sinclair of Harvard Medical School, that “resveratrol improves the health of mice on a high-fat diet and increases life span.” Although they conducted these studies on animals, this is a step forward to hopefully producing drugs that can combat aging diseases (e.g., dementia, Alzheimer’s, stroke, and more).
10. Protects Your Vision
Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis reported that resveratrol, a chemical found in wine, helps to stop the rapid growth of blood vessel growth in eyes. Diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration are the leading cause of blindness for Americans fifty-year-old and up, so moderate consumption of red wine may help prevent blinding diseases.
11. Reduces Cancer Risks
Researchers from the University of Leicester found that daily amounts of resveratrol in two glasses of wine could reduce the rate of bowel tumors by up to 50%. Another study suggests that one of red wine’s antioxidants may protect against lung cancer, especially among smokers.
12. Improves Brain Function and Mood
European researchers conducted a study to examine whether the omega-3 fatty acids in plasma and red blood cells increased with a moderate consumption of alcohol. They found that, in comparison to other alcoholic drinks, wine triggers a boost in omega-3s, which can benefit areas like mental health, memory, and age-related diseases.
13. Fights Inflammation
Research done on mice reveals that resveratrol can help suppress inflammation, especially when it comes to respiratory tract inflammatory diseases such as asthma. Their findings suggest that wine may be able to aide in human inflammation, too.
14. Improves Digestion
Researchers have found that alcoholic beverages like, e.g., wine help speed up the process of emptying food from the stomach. They have also found that it stimulates gastric acid, the fluid that helps our digestive process.
You’re bound to find some way in this list that wine can benefit your health! But remember, a low-to-moderate intake of wine is the best way to reap its benefits.
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