The next time you're deciding whether to uncork a bottle, let science help make up your mind. Many studies support the benefits of wine (in moderation, of course), and they include more than just social lubricant and easy hostess gift. Vino has more powerful health properties than you think, so pour a glass and read up on why it's worth indulging every day.
A glass of red wine (5 ounces) a day has long been praised as good for your ticker. But newer research has also linked moderate alcohol consumption — including white wine and other beverages — to lower risk of heart failure and improved blood pressure. That's due to the plant-antioxidant compounds called flavonoids present in the skins of grapes used to make wine.
Though it seems counterintuitive, regular alcohol drinkers are at lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease and cognitive decline. The flavanols in wine protect your body's cells that support healthy blood vessels — a key physiological benefit that can improve blood flow to the brain and prevent harmful plaque from developing.
Blame it on the relaxation effects of imbibing. Long-term population studies have linked moderate alcohol drinking to longer life! Plus, people who drink in moderation tend to have other healthy behaviors (think: diets packed with plant-based foods and low in saturated fats or regular exercise). So pair your glass with a healthy meal — and hit the gym tomorrow.
While vino will set you back about 120 to 150 calories per 5-ounce glass, moderate alcohol drinkers are less likely to be obese (or suffer from obesity-related diseases like type 2 diabetes) those who don't. When you're planning to relax with a glass, remember: Wine, like any healthy food, can still add up quickly, so pour into a measuring cup first if you're counting calories.
Research has linked moderate alcohol intake to a better mood (and you thought that was just hearsay!) A 2014 study showed that people who had a glass of wine in an unpleasant environment experienced the same level of mood improvement as people who teetotaled in a more pleasant environment. So next time you're in a funk, drink up.