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Say cheers to health

Say cheers to health
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Apart from being centre of happiness in time of celebrations wine is also packed with health benefits. Drinking wine can be good for your physical and...

Apart from being centre of happiness in time of celebrations wine is also packed with health benefits. Drinking wine can be good for your physical and mental health when consumed in moderation. Have a glass or two at dinner and reap its amazing benefits.

French paradox
A study done by UC Davis found that many European cultures especially the French are very healthy in spite of eating high amounts of fatty foods like cheese, red meat and large incidences of smoking. It found that the French at this time were drinking almost 60 litres of wines per person in a year. Further analysis and research revealed that there are several components from grape juice which come into wine. These are antioxidants like resveratrol and other flavonoids, which are beneficial in preventing heart ailments, osteoporosis and several other conditions. Further research led to defining a daily healthy dose of wine – about 1-2 glasses for a woman and 2-3 glasses of wine for a man.

Active components in wine
Researchers at the University of Ulm, Germany found that resveratrol in red wine helps activate a protein that protects the heart from inflammation. It also enhances the health of heart cells leading to a healthy and strong heart. Resveratrol is found in the skins of red grapes and has been shown to be a potent biological agent that may offer protection against cardiovascular disease, cancer, type-2 diabetes, osteoporosis and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease. An Israeli research on subjects drinking wine for 21 consecutive days showed that vascular endothelial function was enhanced, cellular communication improved due to more nitric oxide availability and there was an overall improvement in blood flow. Red wine consumption also decreased cell death. Wine also has high levels of potassium, which works against high blood pressure.

Is red wine only good for you?
All wines are good if consumed in moderation. Red wines have a higher concentration of antioxidants like resveratrol and anthocyanins, which bind off the free radicals generated in the body. White wines and rosé or pink wines also have enough flavonoids to make them a healthy drink. So, choose wines that you like, rather than drinking what you do not enjoy. The Indian climate and local foods go very well with white and rosé wines. It is also easier for Indians to start off with white wines and slowly develop a taste for reds

How much is good for you?
Too much of anything good, including wines can lead to issues. Excess alcohol can damage your liver. Wine, however, can easily be made a part of your food and a glass or two at the dinner table is recommended by cardiologists and many other doctors. Wine enhances the flavour of food and also builds up an appetite. It also helps in reducing stress and getting a good night’s sleep without harrowing hangovers the next morning. Several independent researchers have led to the recommended daily doses of not more than two glasses for a woman and not more than three glasses for a man. Stick ideally to under two glasses for both.

By: Ajoy Shaw

-The writer is an Independent Consultant Winemaker and Wine Professional. He is also the consultant for Hyderabad-based Asav Wines.

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