Science is finally waking up to what human beings have known intuitively for all these years – namely: wine is good for you. It helps in improving our health and also increases our longevity so that we can be hale and hearty well into our golden years.
This is true especially of red wine. Rich in flavonoids that are known for their antioxidant qualities and their ability to increase body immunity, a glass of wine at the end of a long day will keep you away from maladies such as allergens, viruses and carcinogens.
Antioxidants are also helpful in the fight against cancer and cardiovascular disease. If you know your wines, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Syrah and Pinot Noir contain the highest concentrations of both antioxidants and flavonoids. So if wine-drinking is in your agenda, make it one of those three to give it that extra healthy twist.
Other red wines – like Merlots – don’t contain as many flavonoids, but the amount is still higher than most white wines. A glassful of dry red wine is a perfect companion for a quiet evening of solitude and reflection.
Does this give us an excuse to get knackered every night, though? Researchers are always quick to point out that while a pint may be good for you, taking a bottle with you to bed every night is a sure path to Alcoholics Anonymous. In the words of Swiss physician Paracelsus, ‘Wine is a good, a medicine and a poison – it’s just a question of dose.’ Make sure that your dose matches your requirements.
If you’re looking for guidelines, eight ounces is the magic maximum figure for men whereas for women, it is more in the range of four ounces. The good news, though, is that most of the medical community agrees that it is an essential part of our diets. Studies of the French have revealed that they have a lower rate of heart disease despite their diet being extremely rich in fats. The only explanation to their good health, it seems, lies in the fact that they drink a lot of wine.
This is especially true of the southwest portion of France, where life expectancy has traditionally been at its highest. While we’re still looking for the elixir of youth, maybe it’s time we appreciate what we do have – a tonic of longevity, when taken in moderation. Red wine.
So drink and make merry. Just don’t get drunk.

Samar Anand

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