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Is Red Wine Good for You?

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Lose weight, cut-down on social media, read more, drink less... the list goes on. A new year brings forth New Year’s Resolutions, and although the past few years may have proven it challenging to commit to them, you can at least try your best to make better choices.

If you’re aiming to be more conscious of your overall health, red wine is considered to be the better choice when socialising, or even having a “wine”-d down after a long day at the office.

Here’s 6 reasons why experts say red wine is good for you…

Made from crushed dark grapes, red wine contains resveratrol; a plant compound most commonly referred to as the “heart-healthy” antioxidant. This health-boosting supplement is also known to improve brain health and blood pressure.

For years, people have theorized that red wine has many health benefits because of its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and lipid-regulating effects. Studies have shown that consuming a glass (150ml) of red wine a day helps improve your overall health in the following ways:

1. Antioxidant effect

Antioxidants are molecules in your body that fight free radicals. When free radicals outnumber antioxidants, it can lead to a state called oxidative stress, which is linked to multiple diseases, including diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Resveratrol, in red wine, contains antioxidants which help to fight free radicals and prevent damage to blood vessels, reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and inhibit blood clots.

2. Lowers bad cholesterol

Keeping your cholesterol within a healthy scope is essential if you want to reduce the risk of heart disease. According to one study it is said that antioxidants in red wine may increase levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (the “good” cholesterol) and protect against (bad) cholesterol buildup.

3. Good for the heart

Sharing a glass of wine with a loved one is great for the soul, and even better for the heart. Red wine works as a vasodilator in the arteries. It basically assists in opening blood vessels to promote healthy blood flow. And, as a result, the heart does not have to work as hard to pump blood through the body. Wines like Pinot Noir, Malbec, Sirah, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon include higher concentrations of iron, riboflavin, manganese, niacin, and potassium - fantastic choices for your heart, health, and especially your tastebuds.

4. Good for the brain

According to research, resveratrol present in red wines inhibits the formation of beta-amyloid protein, a key ingredient in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s. A report from 2015 also reported that resveratrol helps protect that brain from damage after a stroke. Red wine also helps to improve short-term memory - so if you’re preparing to start a course, and need to cram a few study sessions, some people suggest a glass of wine in the evening could be beneficial. The key, though, is drinking in moderation, as heavier consumption can actually increase the risk. Therefore, it’s best to cap your intake at one glass (5-ounce or 148ml) a day.

5. Boosts your immune system

Red wine may have yet another promising perk. One of its benefits includes immune-boosting properties, thanks (again) to its antioxidant content. Red wine may also boost your microbiome, or healthy gut bacteria. A healthy microbiome can prevent disease development, while an unhealthy microbiome can decrease your immune function, making you more susceptible to getting sick.

6. Good for the waistline

Keep in mind that there are several different types of red wine, all with varying amounts of alcohol and sugar content, which will affect the amount of calories you’re consuming. Generally speaking a dry red wine contains:

Calories: 125
Protein: 0 grams
Fat: 0 grams
Carbs: 4 grams
Sugar: 1 gram
Alcohol: 16 grams

The chemical compound piceatannol converted from resveratrol reduces the fat cells in our body. According to the researchers, piceatannol fastens the insulin receptors of fat cells which blocks the pathways required for immature fat cells to multiply. Too much red wine can deter weight loss, so for the best results make sure to stick to a single serving, avoid sugary dessert wines, and track your calories.

Other potential benefits of red wine include:

Wine consumption may have some health benefits, but drinking too much alcohol can increase health risks. There are a number of long-term health risks when it comes to drinking too much alcohol. Therefore, it is advisable to skip wine for 1 or 2 days in between so that there is sufficient gap in drinking. If you wish to reap the benefits but don’t want a glass, you can use red wine as an ingredient in your food.

Lastly, many of us are aware that once you open a bottle of wine, the contents begin to oxidize, the flavours turn flat, and eventually the wine turns to vinegar. Depending on the wine, red wine will only last between 3-6 days. To keep your bottle fresh, delicious and packed with the wonderful notes and aromas the wine-maker intended, we recommend using a Coravin wine-by-the-glass system. With Coravin’s Pivot device you can keep your bottle well preserved for up to 4 weeks. Where the Timeless ensures your wine remains preserved for months, even years.

For more information visit our Buying Guide. And remember to “always drink responsibly”.