You have all heard the mantra, drink red wine if you want to live longer. Is it really that simple, does drinking red wine truly have health benefits? What about the down side, how much harm is there to our body?
Let's find out if red wine is that beneficial for you. Here is what the experts are saying;
1. Red wine contains the antioxidant resveratrol which protects against some cell damage.
2. Resveratrol also has heart-health benefits including improved physical performance and muscle strength. Note: the benefits are minimal so don’t go for cabernet instead of cardio.
3. People who drink red wine have a 34% lower mortality rate than beer or vodka drinkers. Resveratrol is again the helpful substance.
4. Resveratrol also helps to remove chemicals responsible for causing blood clots, which is the primary cause of coronary disease. A daily dose of red wine may reduce blood clot related stroke rates by 50%.
5. Another active antioxidant in red wine called quercetin works against cancer cells, most often colon cancer.
6. Tannins, which give red wine its colour, contain procyanidins which are known for protecting against heart disease.
7. Some studies have found that up to 7 glasses of red wine can reduce the onset of depression. (Warning: in some people alcohol can induce depression so read to the end of this post).
8. Recent studies have shown a glass of red wine each day can reduce the onset of dementia.
9. Lesser benefits include reducing the risk of lung cancer, preventing blindness, and preventing type-2 diabetes.
How much should you drink to get these benefits - Men should not regularly drink more than 3-4 units of alcohol a day. Women should not regularly drink more than 2-3 units a day. A 250ml (large) glass of 12% red wine has about 3 units of alcohol. A 175ml (medium) glass has about two units.
What are the down sides of drinking red wine (if you are still reading this post) and there are MANY. I will keep the list short so that you read the list to the very end; depression, mental health problems, cardiomyopathy, arrhythmias, stroke, hypertension, fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, cirrhosis, several cancers, pancreatitis, and research is continuing to establish that drinking red wine may cause many other chronic diseases.
I am afraid to say that the negatives of consuming red wine outweigh the positives, it's just that we only want to hear the positive factors.
Consuming any form of alcohol may have some benefits for some people. However, too much alcohol leads to a multitude of health and wellbeing problems, red wine included.
Sorry to be the bearer of bad news!