Is Wine Good for You? Here’s What You Need To Know
Is wine good for you? For as long as most can remember, red wine, in moderation, has been considered to have health benefits, especially for your heart. The topic is worth exploring, especially if you already have a wine habit.
While you may enjoy many different types of red wine, some options are healthier for you than many others.
While doctors don’t prescribe wine as a fix-all for health problems, especially if there is a history of alcoholism in your family, having a glass of red wine, on occasion, with your meal, seems to have notable health benefits. Which red wine is best for your heart, though?
Benefits of Drinking Red Wine
If you’re wondering is wine good for you, the short answer is yes. There are a few ways that it benefits your health, and some are more advantageous than others. With this background information, we can determine which red wine is best for your heart.
Some beverages and foods are rich in antioxidants, and luckily, wine is one of them. Antioxidants prevent cellular damage that is caused by inflammation and oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress is a condition that is caused by an imbalance between antioxidants and unstable molecules called free radicals, which damage cells. In short, more antioxidants mean less cellular damage, and thus, healthier cells — so a healthier system overall.
How does this matter when we’re talking red versus white wine? Grapes have high levels of polyphenols, antioxidants that reduce oxidative stress and inflammation. The grapes used in red wine have a higher level of antioxidants than those found in white wine.
Because of the higher level of antioxidants, red wine is more likely to raise your blood antioxidant levels. That doesn’t mean wine needs to become a daily or overdone habit, but it means that imbibing in a glass of your favorite red every so often could help you live a healthier and possibly even longer life!
Chronic inflammation not only causes pain but can also cause an increase in heart disease, certain cancers, and autoimmune disorders. Wine has anti-inflammatory properties, which means a decrease in inflammation. Those same antioxidants get to work, helping your body get healthier on a cellular level.
Drinking wine may also help with your mental health. In fact, research suggests that wine — in moderation — could contribute to a lowered risk of depression. True, wine won’t cure all that ails you, and you should always talk to your doctor about any symptoms you might be experiencing.
But knowing that a glass of wine not only doesn’t hurt but could help is a useful fact to share!
Drinking wine may promote a healthier gut. Red wine, according to recent studies, may promote gut bacteria that is beneficial. When you think about all the fermentation taking place in the winemaking process, that does make sense.
Healthiest Wines for Your Heart
Now that you know some of the ways that wine can benefit your heart, it’s time to pour a glass. You need to know which wines have the most health benefits (and which ones fit your favorite flavor profile).
This wine has the most health benefits because it contains a higher level of resveratrol, an antioxidant compound proven to improve heart health. Resveratrol has been shown to promote a healthier heart by lowering bad cholesterol and high blood pressure.
Also, studies have suggested that the plant compound can improve insulin sensitivity, brain health and even increase your lifespan. Resveratrol can also kill cancer cells and help improve heart health, according to research.
Recent research also shows that the resveratrol found in Pinot Noir may reduce levels of peptides in Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and other neurological diseases. That doesn’t mean you should imbibe an entire bottle to self-medicate for any condition, but it’s a perk to know that when you’re sipping your Pinot Noir, it could be helping your body in invisible ways.
Malbec grapes are full of antioxidants that benefit cardiovascular health, as well as improve immunity. Malbec wine has four times as many antioxidants as merlot and almost twice that of cabernet sauvignon. As if you needed an excuse to sample a full-bodied, rich malbec, right?
Besides, this delicious wine is high in polyphenols, which as we know, acts as a powerful antioxidant. Polyphenols have been proven to help prevent cell damage. They also have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body, which can lower the risk of chronic disease.
The ever-popular cabernet sauvignon is made from the most common grape in the world. Cabernet sauvignon contains plant compounds (epicatechin and catechin) known to help prevent the flu and other infections.
If you are the type who likes to unwind after a long day at work, you will also be feeding your brain function, as cabernet sauvignon helps reduce the levels of amyloid-beta peptides. This wine will also help weed out the bad cholesterol and help maintain the good — a heart-healthy benefit to round out the power of cabernet.
Merlot is good for heart health because it contains polyphenols that help prevent artery buildup by depleting the bad cholesterol in the bloodstream. Merlot can also help improve the bacterial lining of the large intestine, which promotes a healthy gut. Merlot is high in probiotics which also helps with gut health.
Is trouble getting to sleep? Merlot grapes contain melatonin, a chemical that our bodies produce anyway, to help us sleep peacefully. Drinking one glass of merlot before bed is likely to help you relax and get a good night’s sleep.
This delicious wine contains several health benefits that will make sipping the delicious wine pleasant and beneficial. Petit Sirah contains a great number of antioxidants, tannins and resveratrol.
This wine is a good source of polyphenols and several other antioxidants that may help maintain a healthy heart. Those same antioxidants have also been linked to cancer prevention and prevention of neurological issues, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Petit sirah is a bitter wine, which usually means it is high in procyanidin. That’s another win for cardiovascular and overall health, making this wine a good choice if you want the best wine for your heart.
Rosé is the last wine on my list and is a combination of white and red grapes. It contains antioxidants, albeit less than red, but it is still more beneficial for you than white wine because of the polyphenols, which, as you know, contribute to heart health.
This wine also has anti-inflammatory characteristics and can help to fight oxidative stress. The antioxidants can also help to lower your LDL cholesterol, which is the bad kind that no one wants.
So, Is Wine Really Good For You?
The good news for wine lovers everywhere is that red wine is good for you when enjoyed in moderation. The types of red wine that offer the most health factors are listed above, so enjoy at your leisure.
The best wine for your heart is a red wine that is rich in antioxidants and polyphenols. So toss that apple out the window because apparently, a glass of red wine a day will keep the doctor away.
Do you want to find out more about your favorite wines? Check out my wine FAQ page.