The Health Benefits of Wine

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We are all aware of the many joys that a good Italian wine can bring. From taste through to texture and the history of the many great winemakers that are dotted throughout the country, there are many pleasures that can be derived simply from enjoying a good glass of wine.

However wine also has many more practical benefits that go beyond the pleasure of simply enjoying a drink. In fact a glass of wine has been linked to improving the health of the drinker in many ways, assuming it is enjoyed in moderation of course. Here we aim to look at some of the many health benefits that come with drinking a good wine.

Longer Life

A Finnish Study that was conducted over the course of almost 30 years and involved nearly 2,500 men found that those who drink wine have a much lower mortality rate than those who have a preference for beers and spirits.

In fact the difference was rather remarkable with the results showing that from the group of men tested, those who drank wine instead of other types of alcohol had a 34 percent lower mortality rate.

Of course, as with any drink, too much of a good thing can cause issues in the long term. However a glass of wine with a meal is proven to be much better for long term health than a beer of spirit.

Fewer Heart Problems

Red wine in particular is linked to improving the condition of the heart and a number of studies have shown that those who enjoy a glass of red wine per day are at far less risk of suffering from heart attacks of other ailments of the heart than those who are either non-drinkers or dabble with other forms of alcohol.

In fact a study by the acclaimed American institution of Harvard found that those with high blood pressure could reduce their risk of having a heart attack by as much as 30 percent if they had a glass of red wine every day. Those who don’t drink wine, on the other hand, are much more susceptible.

When it comes to other heart diseases a good red wine was shown to reap benefits as well. Red wine in general contains tannins that have procyanidins in them. This is a compound that acts as an antioxidants in much the same way as Vitamins C and E and it is useful for stabilizing naturally occurring collagen in the body. In fact the compound has been linked to everything from preventing chromosomal mutations right through to strengthening muscles and joints. All of this is in addition to the many benefits it has for the heart.

Practically all red wines have this compound in them, though some will obviously have more than others. If you truly wish to take advantage of the medical benefits of good red wine it is advised that you seek out the drinks that are high in procyanidins to reap the highest rewards.

Lower Risk of Strokes

Strokes can have a devastating effect on all who suffer them, impairing both mental and physical faculties to an enormous degree if they are not treated in time. Happily it has been shown that drinking a moderate amount of wine per day can actually reduce the risk of suffering a stroke, especially as the consumer advances in years.

The reason for this is that most alcohols thin to the blood to a degree, which makes it more difficult for blood clots to form. Blood clots are one of the primary causes of strokes and can also lead to an array of other health issues besides.

This information was supported by a study by Columbia University which examined more than 3,000 people over the course of eight years to find out the effects of various levels of alcohol consumption. The overall conclusion was that a small amount of alcohol every day, such as a glass of Italian wine, can reduce the risk of having a stroke related to the development of a blood clot by as much as 50 percent.

A Reduced Risk of Cataracts

Cataracts play havoc with a person’s ability to see and in extreme cases they can lead to the suffered going blind. They are a common issue for those who are approaching old age and something that most people will surely wish to avoid if at all possible.

Drinking in moderation can again reduce the risks of getting cataracts by as much as 32 percent, so again a glass of wine or beer a night proves to be extremely beneficial in regards to long term health.

In this case the supporting study also concluded that out of all alcoholic drinks, wine was the most effective in this regard. As such those who drink wine are 43 percent less likely to develop cataracts than those who primarily drink beer, which when added on to the 32 percent mentioned earlier is an enormous reduction in the risk of suffering from this affliction.

Keeps the Mind Sharp

We have all heard from those who jokingly claim that drinking alcohol kills brain cells and leads to a reduction in brain activity, however a study by Columbia University that was published in 2006 appears to show that the opposite is actually true.

Drink a glass of wine every day ensures that the brain declines at a much slower rate than the brain of somebody who doesn’t consume any alcohol at all. Again it is important to point out that this is only the case if the drink is taken in moderation and it is not recommended to drink large amounts of any form of alcohol every single day.

Always keep in mind that moderation is the key, not only to the enjoyment of a good wine but also in regards to taking advantage of the many health benefits they can provide. Having said that, it is always heartening to find out that something that provides so much pleasure to people can also have a long term positive effect on their health and well-being.

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