Is Red Wine Really Good For Your Heart
Cardiovascular disease has the highest mortality in the world. For some years now, a relationship between drinking red wine in moderate amounts and good heart health has been doing the rounds. Of course it has been backed by some findings. So much so that in clinical nutrition programs, whether for weight loss or for heart health, moderate amounts of wine are permitted for those who enjoy alcohol.
So, where did all this begin?
French with their diets high in saturated fats and cholesterol had low rates of heart disease and the observation was made that wine was a part of their diet. Another argument emerged from the observations made on the Mediterranean diet. This diet indeed had a lot of heart protective foods and it featured wine too.
And how does red wine possibly have these protective heart effects?
Red wine which is made by crushing red grapes is a rich source of resveratrol which is a polyphenol found in the skin of grapes. Polyphenols have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and may have an essential role to play in lowering cholesterol levels and blood pressure. But, resveratrol supplements do not offer the same effect. So, it is unclear whether the protective effect on the heart is directly due to red wine or there are other factors involved. There is also a debate on the amount of resveratrol that a person would need to consume for the possible protective effects. In fact a large amount of wine would need to be consumed to get the amount of resveratrol reported to have the beneficial effects.
So, if you do not drink alcohol, there isn’t a need to start with wine just for the probable benefits. And, if you are one who enjoys red wine, do so in moderation.
It is also imperative to know the disastrous medical problems of excessive alcohol intake like alcohol abuse, liver cirrhosis, increased risk of depression, weight gains, cancers, sudden cardiac death, etc. Hence, it is better to get the benefits of resveratrol by simply eating grapes or drinking the grape juice. In fact foods like cranberries, blueberries, peanuts, pistachios and even cocoa and dark chocolate contain resveratrol and one can reap the benefits of resveratrol by eating these foods than depending on red wine.
But, rather than relying on just one compound for good health, what works best is a good and healthy diet with a variety of foods from the different food groups, regular exercise and a change in lifestyle habits. Are you someone looking out to including heart healthy foods into your diet. Well, a qualified nutritionist under a clinical nutrition program can help plan a diet for a good heart and overall health.