A nice glass of red wine has long been used by people to unwind after a long day.
But while you sip away at your vintage while catching up with your latest reality TV show, you can now have the added bonus of knowing wine can actually be good for you in a number of ways – aside from helping you leave the workday behind.
From helping prevent cancer to giving your brain a temporary boost, here are 3 health benefits of red wine (in moderation, of course) to keep in mind the next time you’re considering uncorking a bottle…
1. It Boosts Brain Function
If you have a bottle of wine to yourself, you’re probably not going to think very clearly. However, if you keep it to a single glass, you are actually giving your brain a bit of a kickstart.
Research has shown that the very act of tasting wine can engage all of your senses, which in itself can stimulate cognition. There’s other research that shows a compound found in red wine called resveratrol can actually act as a shield for cells in the brain.
The metabolized remnants of wine in the stomach following a glass can help prevent brain neurons from dying off, which can help avoid the onset of Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.
2. Antioxidants in Red Wine Protect Against Cancer
Antioxidants found in red wine including resveratrol can help battle free radicals in your body that are linked to cancer.
What are free radicals? Basically, they’re uncharged atoms that can do damage to cells that leads to disease or premature aging. They freely roam the body looking for an electron to form a pair and can do damage in the process.
Antioxidants provide an electron to uncharged molecules, reducing how “radical” they are and thus limiting damage.
Research has suggested that men who drink from 4 to 7 glasses of red wine per week are only about half as likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer as their non-red-wine-drinking counterparts. Colon and breast cancer risk have also been shown to drop from red wine consumption.
3. Red Wine Is Good For Your Heart
As if the other reasons aren’t enough for you to invest in a wine cave, here’s another.
Red wine may also reduce the risk of heart disease, which is the leading cause of death in the U.S. The tannins found in red wine that give it the distinctive color contain procyanidins, which also combat the free radicals that have already been mentioned.
A study shows that drinking the equivalent of two glasses of red wine for 21 consecutive days (you don’t have to stop there if you don’t want to) helped improve blood flow, which makes things easier on the heart.
It’s no surprise then that populations that are known for red wine consumption also are also among the lowest when it comes to cardiovascular diseases.
Raise a Glass To The Health Benefits of Red Wine
The next time you’re enjoying a glass of red wine after a particularly stressful day, remember that you’re doing yourself a favor. The health benefits of red wine are proven by science, so pour yourself a glass and enjoy it.
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