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Where the Health Benefits of Wine Tip to Health Risks

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Okay, the cat’s out of the bag: wine is good for you. With 5th century Italian monks as inspiration and double blind clinical studies as proof, modern medicine has accepted that the benefits to drinking a moderate amount of wine on a regular basis far outweigh any that could result from not engaging in the practice. The key to this life-giving scenario, as recently pointed out by a group of Australian researchers, is moderation.

Their efforts were targeted at understanding the relationship between the beneficial antioxidants in red wine and the blood-pressure increasing properties of alcohol. There was a hope that the good stuff in wine would offset alcohol’s tendency to raise blood pressure. The study was conducted on 24 healthy, non-smoking males who did not intake any alcohol for several months prior to the study. Half the group was given beer on a daily basis and the other half was given wine. The result was that daily wine drinking raised systolic blood pressure nearly as much as beer.

The implication is that if more than two glasses of wine are taken in daily, men at risk of hypertension and men with hypertension will tip the health benefits of wine to a health risk. Two glasses daily is the optimum sweet spot for those interested in achieving the maximum benefit for the heart. At this level, people can still benefit from the HDL (good) cholesterol-raising effect and anti-coagulant properties of alcohol.

Cheers to that!

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About Tynan Szvetecz

  • http://paperfrigate.blogspot.com DrPat

    Did the study focus on red wine only, or was white wine also considered?

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Have any studies compared wine to grape juice which has not been fermented?

    Are those of us who avoid alcohol automatically excluded from these health benefits? Are the beneficial antioxidants generated in the fermentation vats, or are they already there in the original fresh grapes?

  • Eric Olsen

    thanks TS, good to hear. I tell our 5 year-old almost daily that too much whine is not good for her

  • http://www.savoreachglass.com Tynan Szvetecz

    lol Eric. Yeah I think we could all use a little of that advice 😉

    Victor – Great question! Many, but not all, of the numerous health benefits associated with wine can also be gained by eating dark colored grapes (the kind with seeds) daily. Grapes can do wonders for detoxification especially for the digestive tract, liver, kidneys and blood. However, the advantage of wine is that you can get in a glass or two the same benefits as two pounds of fresh grapes!

    There are some benefits that arise only from fermentation, including those that are tied to the moderate consumption of alcohol. It is believed that many of the antioxidants in wine are tied to fermentation.

    For more information on the benefits of raw grapes, consult a nutritionist.

    -Dr. Pat, this study was tied primarily to red wine. White wine has many benefits, but red wine has a bit more, so the study aimed to take the highest performing of the two and compare to other beverages.

    Thanks gang!

  • http://www.safehealthdirect.com Macgrath

    Wine inhibits the growth of all microorganisms that cause several kinds of disease in man. Because of its alcoholic and acidic content, these microorganisms simply die in the wine.

    In the modern world, wine is accepted as a healthful drink. Only in the United States are we once again beginning to rediscover its value and benefits in society.

    For many years, we focused on the dangers of overindulgence. To be sure, there are dangers to the overuse of wine. The Bible also warns of this. But in moderation, it is a healthy beverage.

  • Tammy

    Wine is a great drink, and I understand that in moderation in can be considered healthy… but remember it’s not the grapes that are addicting, it’s the alcohol and the alcohol’s trate. A bottle of wine is usually 12-14% alcohol, much higher than beer. Alcohol is addicting so unless you can stop at exactly 2 glasses a day chances that health risks will occur are high. And just because it’s ‘wine’ doesn’t mean you can’t get a dui, etc etc…. wine is great but it’s still an alcoholic beverage not a health drink.