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Here's to Red Wine

The case for sipping red wine is mounting with a growing body of evidence linking moderate consumption with numerous health benefits including a reduced risk of lifestyle related heart disease.
As the leading cause of death in Australia claiming one life nearly every ten minutes, the suggestion that a daily dose of red will help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease has been welcomed by doctors, scientists and wine drinkers alike.
Since the early 1990's when it was first purported to be the mystery behind the 'French Paradox', red wine has basked in its reputed health benefits. Scientists at the time were perplexed by the relatively low incidence of coronary heart disease in France, despite a diet high in saturated fats and cholesterol laden foods such as cheese, pork and butter. Scientific studies have since reported red wine as a possible explanation of the French Paradox, with strong evidence to suggest that regular but moderate consumption helps the French fare notably better on a number of health issues despite their love of foods we typically view as unhealthy.
Receiving a strong amount of attention from researchers today is Resveratrol, a naturally occurring polyphenol antioxidant found in the skin of red grapes and ultimately in the skin of red grapes and ultimately in red wine. Resveratrol acts as a 'vascular pipe-cleaner' – protecting the lining of the heart's blood vessels, maintaining blood flow and keeping arteries free of 'fatty' deposits or atherosclerotic plaques known to cause heart attacks and stroke.
Other foods argued to contain Resveratrol include pomegranates, blueberries, cranberries and peanuts – although it is not yet known how beneficial eating these foods might be when compared to the moderate consumption of red wine.
While the case for sipping red wine is strong, the rules to reaping its potential health benefits are regularity and moderation. The important of a regular yet moderate consumption is almost impossible to over-emphasise, with the potential for overindulgence to become considerably more harmful to your health. In the words of Abraham Lincoln, the issues is 'not the use of a bad thing, but the abuse of a very good thing.
Australian Alcohol Guidelines advise us to drink no more than two standard drinks on any one day. One standard drink is 100 ml of red, white or sparkling wine (12% alc./vol).
The average restaurant serve of wine (150ml) is equivalent to 1.4 standard drinks while a standard bottle (750ml) equates to 7.5 standard drinks.
Last modified on Tuesday, 30 October 2012 15:17
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