There are some things in life that are too good to pass up, even though they may not be the best things for our health.  Until recently, one of these unhealthy habits included drinking wine.  Yet, recent studies have shown that drinking red wine in moderation offers significant health benefits.

Mandy Oaklander of Time Magazine called alcohol “the Goldilocks of the nutrition world.”  Drinking too much alcohol can lead to serious health problems such as high blood pressure; increases your risk for several types of cancer; damage to your liver, pancreas, and immune system; as well as the obvious risk of alcoholism and the multiple health problems associated with dependency.  Conversely, Oaklander points out that for those who do not partake in any alcoholic intake are missing out from the health benefits that moderate drinkers experience.  These include lower likelihood of being diagnosed with type-2 diabetes, and lower incidences of cardiovascular disease and mortality.

The study lasted for two years, and its’ participants had already been diagnosed with well-managed type-2 diabetes, which increases their likelihood of experiencing cardiovascular disease.  The group that drank a glass of red wine each day had resveratrol levels that were 13-fold higher than the group drinking white wine.  Resveratrol is the antioxidant found in red wine that appears to increase levels of the “good” cholesterol, high density lipoprotein, or HDL.

White wine also has some positive effects, just to a much lesser effect than red wine.  Due to the fact that there is a much greater positive effect with red wine, this is suggested over white wine for health benefits.  For adults that are able to manage their alcohol intake, so that their daily glass of wine does not become an entire bottle each evening, dry red wines are best.  This would include pinot noir, Cannonau, cabernet sauvignon, or a merlot enjoyed with your largest meal of the day.

This isn’t the only benefit to the red wine either.  Measuring your blood sugar about an hour after a meal eaten with a glass of red wine would show that your blood sugar is about 30% less than if you had not had the glass of wine.  This reduction in blood sugar is important because the post-meal sugar spike is a source of inflammation that contributes to hearth disease, dementia, diabetes, arthritis and so much more, according to Dr. James O’Keefe of Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute.