I love wine: its flavors, culture and medicinal qualities. Wine can be a mild, natural tranquilizer, which reduces anxiety and tension. As part of a balanced diet, wine provides the body with energy, with substances that aid our digestion, and comes with small amounts of minerals and vitamins.
Have you ever heard of the French Paradox? The diet of many people in France includes lots of cheese, butter, eggs, fatty organ meat, and other cholesterol-laden foods, which would seem to promote a variety of health issues – high cholesterol, high blood pressure, weakened immune system, and heart disease, to name a few. Yet, they have lower incidences of these diseases than people in America.
The Framingham Heart Study showed that moderate wine drinkers had 50% fewer deaths from coronary disease than non-drinkers. The chemical components thought to be responsible are catechins or flavonoids, which are believed to function like antioxidants, preventing free radicals from doing any cell damage. There are also compounds in grapes called resveratrol and quercetin, which have shown to boost our immune system, block cancer formation and protect against heart disease. In addition, the alcohol in wine helps reduce or balance our bad cholesterol.
In over 400 studies worldwide, research has concluded that most healthy people who drink wine daily and moderately – 2 glasses or less per day – live longer.
The antioxidant activity in 1 glass of red wine – on average – is equivalent to that found in:
- 12 glasses of white wine
- 2 cups of tea
- 5 apples
- 7 glasses of orange juice
- 20 glasses of apple juice