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Nothing to Wine About

benefits of drinking red wine

You may have heard that having a glass of red wine a day can be beneficial to your health. But why is that? Red wine contains a compound called resveratrol. Resveratrol is produced by some plants to fight off bacteria and fungi and to help protect against damage from UV rays. Resveratrol in wine comes from the skin of the red grapes that are used to make the wine. Research has suggested that some forms of resveratrol may boost cardiovascular health, protect against some types of cancers and even help treat acne. Of course, one should be mindful when consuming red wine because it does contain alcohol. It is recommended that women have no more than one glass a day and no more than two glasses a day for men.

According to recent research, the health benefits of resveratrol include:

  • Raising levels of omega 3 fatty acids

  • Omega 3 fatty acids are usually derived from eating fish and can protect against heart disease. A recent research study suggests that adults who drank moderate amounts of red wine had high blood levels of omega 3 fatty acids.

  • Heart health and type 2 diabetes

  • One recent study suggests that drinking a glass of wine a day could potentially decrease cardio metabolic risk in people who have type 2 diabetes. It has been suggested that ethanol in wine may play a role in metabolizing glucose.

  • Healthy blood vessels and blood pressure

  • UK scientists found that procyanidins, compounds found in red wine can help keep blood vessels healthy. It has been observed that consuming red wine can be relaxing for some people, which could help lower blood pressure.

  • Preventing dementia

  • Loyola University Medical Center found that drinking red wine moderately could reduce the risk for developing dementia. Studies show that resveratrol in wine reduces the stickiness of blood platelets and this helps keep blood vessels open and flexible, promoting a good supply of blood to the brain.

  • Protecting from severe sunburn

  • Scientists in Spain suggest that wine and grapes can help protect the skin against the UV lights from the sun. Wine and grapes contain flavonoids that inhibit the formation of reactive oxygen species (oxidized fats, DNA and other large molecules) in skin cells that are exposed to sunlight. Researchers suggest adding more grape products to sun screens to help prevent sunburn.

  • Treating acne

  • Resveratrol can act as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent that can help treat acne. Scientists suggest mixing it with benzoyl peroxide and applying it directly to the skin.

Written by: Hanna Stringer, Wellness Workdays Dietetic Intern. Learn more about Wellness Workdays and our wellness program offerings by downloading our brochure.

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