16 Reasons to Drink Wine With Dinner Tonight

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Photo credit: bigstock.com

After a truly horrible day at the office, is there anything more pleasurable than popping that cork and pouring truly great glass of wine? Do you ever have those moments, however, where you start to wonder … Is this wine really good for my health?  You go to the gym, you try to keep regular hours for quality sleep, you make healthy food choices, but have you ever wondered if you are doing all that for naught, simply because of a few glasses of wine each week?

You have probably heard that red wine is good for your heart, but you should prepare yourself to be absolutely amazed. There are health benefits in that glass of wine that you have only wished were true, but you didn’t realize they actually are true.

Most of the benefits in wine come to us from a little ingredient called resveratrol. This substance is found in red and purple grapes, cranberries, mulberries, pistachios, blueberries, and peanuts. We will talk about red wine here because white wine does not contain resveratrol — sorry!

Keep reading and find out how that little glass of wine you enjoy with dinner each night is actually a super powerful health elixir. More than just being heart-healthy, wine can also …

 

1.  Keep Your Weight In Check

Several studies have found that those who imbibe daily have lower overall body mass than those who only drink occasionally. Moderate wine drinkers have less belly fat and slimmer waistlines than people who drink hard liquor. The mild alcohol found in wine encourages your body to continue to burn calories for as long as 90 minutes after you finish that glass. Keep your scale in the corner, and fight the battle of the bulge with a nice glass of wine.

 

2. Protect You From Ovarian Problems

Researchers in Australia found that when they compared cancer-free women to those with ovarian cancer, the women who drank one glass of wine each day had a lower risk of developing this type of cancer. How much lower? By an incredible 50 percent! The University of Hawaii also found similar links between drinking wine and  lower rates of ovarian cancer. Although scientists don’t understand exactly why this is, they believe it might have to do with the high levels of phytoestrogens and antioxidants found in wine. Both of these compounds have powerful anti-cancer properties. One study done recently at the University of Michigan found that red wine killed ovarian cancer cells in a test tube. Ladies, feel free to enjoy that glass of wine with dinner sans guilt.

 

3. Lower Your Risk Of Diabetes

Both men and women who drank one glass of wine each day had a 30 percent lower risk of developing diabetes, according to one study. This is thought to be due to resveratrol, which improves the body’s sensitivity to insulin. A resistance to insulin is the most crucial factor when it comes to lowering your risk of developing diabetes.

 

4.  Make You Smarter

Well, we hate to brag, but don’t wine drinkers seem to be a bit sharper than everyone else? Studies show that resveratrol can help improve your short term memory, making it easier to learn new memories and improve learning skills. One study showed that within 30 minutes of drinking a glass of wine, subjects had a significant increase in their retention of words, as well as quicker performance in the section of the brain in charge of learning, memory, and emotions.

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Photo credit: bigstock.com

5.  Lengthen Your Life

It’s true! People from the island of Ikarios, according to the recent research, live longer than anyone else on this planet. They consume wine on a daily basis, eat less animal protein, and consume plenty of organic produce. Residents of both Sardinia and Crete sip red wine each night as a natural part of their lifestyle, and these residents often live well into their 90s.

One study found that the compounds found in the tannins of red wine, called procyanidins, encourage cardiovascular health. In fact, wines that are made in Sardinia and southwest France are particularly high in procyanidins, and people there live very long, healthy lives overall. Harvard Medical School found that resveratrol activates a protein that encourages longevity and health in studies done in animals. By increasing the activity of sirtuins, resveratrol stimulates a group of genes that protect the body from common diseases associated with aging, thus improving longevity. Perhaps the fountain of youth is actually right there in that bottle of wine!

 

6. Stop Acne

Studies show that resveratrol can stop the increase of bacteria that cause acne for longer periods than benzoyl peroxide, the most commonly used over-the-counter cream for acne. Studies also show that drinking wine and using benzoyl peroxide can give you even better results than using either one of these items alone. Make a toast to your beautiful new complexion and bottoms up!

 

7.  Reduce Your Risk of Stroke

In analyses adjusted for age, smoking, and gender, studies showed that the consumption of wine on a regular basis was associated with a lower risk of ischemic stroke, when compared to those who did not drink wine. This benefit was not seen in those who drank beer or hard liquor.

 

8.  Wine Can Equal A Trip To The Gym

The University of Alberta in Canada conducted research which found that the resveratrol in wine improved the bone, heart, and brain function in much the same way that a trip to the gym does. Now which would you rather do: Have a glass of wine or sweat away at the gym? In all fairness, working out has its benefits as well, but imagine what doing both can do for your health.

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Photo credit: bigstock.com

9. Reduce Your Risk Of Liver Disease

Most people associate alcohol consumption with liver disease, but in this case, you will happy to know that wine does the opposite. One study showed that drinking a glass of wine each day decreased the risk of developing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. In fact, when compared to those who did not drink wine, the risk of developing this liver disease was reduced by half! Those who drank beer or hard liquor, even in moderation, saw their risk increased by a whopping four times.

 

10. Regulates Blood Sugar

Since red wine is overflowing with polyphenols, many people find that they have better control over their blood sugar levels without the use of drugs. Polyphenols interact with cells that are involved in the development and storage of fat as well as the regulation of blood sugar. The polyphenols in red wine work just as well as the blood sugar regulating drugs of some anti-diabetic prescription drugs. This isn’t an excuse to ditch your medications and start drinking wine, but talk to your doctor about adding a glass or two of wine to you daily diet.

 

11. Fight Off The Common Cold

If Grandma gave you a shot or two of wine when you had a cold, she knew what she was doing. One study took 4,000 faculty members at five different universities across Spain and found that those who drank a moderate amount of wine each day were less likely to get a cold when compared to those who drank hard liquor or beer. Scientists believe that the high levels of antioxidants can help lower inflammation, and this will reduce the symptoms of colds.

 

12.  Beat The Blues

Most people use wine to help them relax, but did you know that wine can also prevent depression? A Spanish study done found that subjects who drank between two and seven glasses of wine each week were much less likely to be diagnosed with depression. This was true even when scientists took into account lifestyle factors. However, wine will not cure depression, so don’t feel that you can drink your depression away. Simply drinking a few glasses of wine each week can reduce your risk of depression, so why not?

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Photo credit: bigstock.com

Photo credit: bigstock.com

13. Keep Your Peepers Healthy

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, presented a study showing that resveratrol stops uncontrollable blood vessel growth in the eyes. This means wine can help treat age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. Now these studies were done with mice, and human studies will need to be done to confirm this and to find out the proper dose, but this is a wonderful start and is good news for wine drinkers.

 

14. Protect Your Oral Health

Most people think red wine will stain their teeth — which is true if you drink large amounts and don’t care for your health — but did you know that wine can protect the overall health of your mouth? Wine has powerful antimicrobials that can reduce the amount of bacteria in the mouth and on the teeth. In fact, scientists note that those who drink wine have very little plaque when compared with non-wine drinkers.

 

15. Lowers Cholesterol Levels

The powerful antimicrobials that stop plaque from forming on the teeth also stop plaque from forming in your blood vessels. Resveratrol reduces the bad (LDL) cholesterol levels while increasing the good (HDL) cholesterol levels in the body. The American Heart Association admits that moderate amounts (meaning one glass a day for women and two glasses a day for men) of wine can increase your good cholesterol levels by as much as 12 percent, with absolutely no changes in your diet whatsoever.

 

SEE ALSO: 12 Shocking Health Benefits Of Whiskey (You Won’t Believe #9!)

 

16.  Cuts Multiple Cancer Risks

As if the 15 points above were not enough reason, this is the clincher. First, studies have shown that a moderate consumption of wine can reduce the risk of colon cancer by a whopping 50 percent!

Breast cancer tumors use an enzyme in the body called aromatase to produce their own estrogen. Red grapes are one of the best aromatase inhibitors around. You can eat red grapes or drink red wine to kill breast cancer cells by cutting off a pathway known to feed cancer cells.

Yet another study, by Harvard Men’s Health this time, found that those who drank between four and seven glasses of wine each week had a 52 percent lower chance of developing prostate cancer when compared to those who did not drink wine.

Red wine appears to especially protective when fighting aggressive or advanced cancers. Scientists believe that it is the flavonoids and resveratrol which contain super antioxidants to counterbalance excessive hormones.

Extra Tips:

  Don’t make the mistake of trying to get all of your health benefits from a bottle. Wine is part of a healthy lifestyle, but it won’t make up for unhealthy eating or other destructive lifestyle habits.

Look at the Mediterranean lifestyle, often touted as being the one of the healthiest diets in the world, and try to add more of that into your life.

Eat more fruits, vegetables, olive oil, coconut oil, and legumes.

Eat at a slower pace, and enjoy the meal.

Linger at the table, talking with family and friends.

And of course, enjoy that leisurely glass of wine without guilt.

References:

Medicalnewstoday.com

Stroke.ahajournals.org

Health.harvard.edu