While most white wines do not offer any health benefits, red wines are believed to contain compounds that benefit the drinker’s health. Reds account for the so called ‘French Paradox’, which points out that although the French have a diet typically high in saturated fats they have a lower than expected rate of cardiovascular disease. It has been suggested by some researchers that the consumption of red wine accounts for this anomaly. This does not mean that white wines are bad for you, it just means that red wines offer more important health benefits.
Before discussing the health benefits of wine, it is important to remember that health professionals recommend all wine should be drunk in moderation (about a glass a day). Sadly, drinking gallons of wine every day won’t turn you into a some sort of paragon of health.
So what does science say red wine might be good for? There have been many studies into wine and health, some of which indicate it can help reduce problems including heart disease and cancer. One surprising study from France in 2002, results suggested that a glass of red wine a day might help prevent heart attacks by around 50% for middle aged men.
Red wine is also said to contain cholesterol-reducing plant compounds called saponins, anti-oxidants that lower the chances of getting blood clots, anti-inflammatory agents, and that it can protect against Alzheimer’s disease, atherosclerosis, hypertension and kidney stones. Once more, these benefits are said to follow a moderate intake of wine.