16 Oct wine or no wine?
You gave up gluten, dairy, processed food, and bravely drank a green smoothie every day for two months…but still refuse to give up your nightly red wine? Welcome to the club.
Some diet habits are easier to kick than others; partly because you know eliminating, say, sugar from your diet will be positive change, but your wine? There is still a lot of confusion surrounding alcohol and its role in a healthful diet – particularly with red wine. Ultimately, what makes red wine different and how can it be enjoyed without damaging good health?
The compound in red wine that gets so much attention is resveratrol – a polyphenol found in the skin of grapes that has a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect. Resveratrol is now being used for a wide variety of purposes – from antiaging face cream to supplements for recovering cancer patients and those with high cholesterol. Resveratrol is getting quick attention in the health and wellness communities, but is the dose found in red wine enough to do significant good?
A glass of red wine contains about 0.2 – 2 milligrams of resveratrol while supplements contain much higher amounts. The French are famous for their “French Paradox” where a country that enjoys its buttery pastries, red wine, cheese, and egg, lard, and cream heavy dishes also has a lower incidence of heart disease than several other western countries. This long-used example seems to indicate that, even in small doses, resveratrol may be beneficial. It is important, however, to remember that moderation is key. Even slightly overindulging in alcohol is enough to make your body work harder to pump blood faster, fight dehydration, and overburden the liver. Another thing to consider is buying an organic, sulfite free wine which may be good for people trying to limit pesticide or allergen exposure.
Ultimately, the final verdict on red wine is still out, but there is certainly enough positive information to justify a small, healthy-minded indulgence!…if that works for you.