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Understanding the health benefits of wine

Diet & nutrition 101
Diet & nutrition 101
September 1, 2022
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One day, you hear someone saying something is healthy for you. The next day, someone else says that's not the case. It can be irritating and confusing, especially when it comes to your favorite items, like wine.

To understand the health benefits of wine, we have to acknowledge that each person has different health goals. Also, that each study must be viewed in context, and not used as a sweeping definitive.

Many wines are rich in antioxidants, which help protect your body’s cells from free radicals. Free radicals can come from the breakdown of your food, and can have negative effects on your body. They can cause dangerous chemical reactions within the bodily systems called oxidation. 

This is a naturally occurring reaction within the body, however, like everything, too much can be a bad thing. When normal metabolic reactions happen within the body and go out of whack, the body can suffer serious side effects. 

To prevent those types of issues from happening, it is vital to consider what you put into your body, as it all plays direct roles in these processes. Wine, white or red, has antioxidative properties. Red typically has more than white. Overall, red wine does have more nutrients and minerals than white wine. 

Even so, that doesn’t mean you can get all your sustenance from a bottle every night. The occasional glass is better than your average can of beer. Comparatively, beer has more carbs, more calories, and less of an alcohol content when compared to wine. 

Those planning to start a family, may reference a study that showed women who drink wine in moderation achieved pregnancy faster than other women. 

While others may note studies that talk about the benefits of resveratrol. This natural phenol is found in red wine, and is thought to combat such illnesses as cancer and Alzheimer's disease. 

However, drinking in excess, or while on medications can have negative impacts on your body.

Any cardioprotective benefits that red wine may have would most certainly be undone if you never exercised and ate nothing but processed foods.

The World Heart Federation released a study showing the health benefits of alcohol may have been over exaggerated. However, it is important to note their studies were mostly focused on Caucasians over the age of 55. Many of the associated maladies of excessive drinking were compounded by other factors, such as poor diet and tobacco use.

This all supports our initial observation that each person should and must tailor their diet to their own health goals. Stay healthy and keep an eye out for the next reality bending study that is inevitably coming to say everything we love is bad.

About the author: Samantha Harvill graduated, with honors, from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelors of Science in Emergency Medicine and was recently commissioned as a Lieutenant in the US Army Reserves. She is an avid runner, and is currently training for her next marathon.
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