Wine has been one of the most common drinks in the modern and Western world throughout history, and it is one of the beverages with the longest history in the world. Wine is widely appreciated, and in recent times, wine experts in both tasting and brewing have sprung up everywhere. With its popularity, it is no wonder that scientists have begun investigating the health benefits and detriments of wine. Findings have shown that wine is beneficial for the health of people, and a daily intake can improve health in general. Because the beverage contains alcohol, it is necessary to practice regulation in its intake. However, the question that remains is how much wine is required so that its benefits can be seen, and how much wine is too much?
Benefits of Wine
The main health benefit and a widely research one is the presence of the compound resveratrol, a phenol that is found in grape skins and seeds. Resveratrol is present in higher percentage in red wines than white wines due to the differing wine-making procedures, and is beneficial for cancer prevention. Studies have shown that sipping a glass of red wine a day significantly reduces the risk of cancer in the esophagus. In addition to this, wine contains compounds that help reduce the level of blood cholesterol, and therefore improve the health of the heart. Wine also helps in weight loss and in regulating diabetes when taken in moderate amounts, as well as mental health that could be essential in preventing diseases such as dementia.
The US Food and Drug Administration has strict definitions of the word “moderate” when it comes to alcohol. The recommended intake is no more than one 5-ounce glass of wine for women, and two glasses for men. This is widely backed up by the views of medical professionals and academics that have done research in the area. This, however, must be taken in context of the individual’s physical state. Factors that must be considered include the age, size and weight of the person. In addition, wine taken after food tends to be more easily absorbed and the benefits more easily seen than wine on an empty stomach.
As with many alcoholic drinks, imbibing wine runs the risk of alcoholism, which can be a serious problem to society and family. Another way to gauge whether the intake of wine of an individual is too much is to see whether the person suffers as a result of the drinking. As mentioned above, the level of alcohol that a person can take differs from individual to individual, and the behavior of a person tells much about his or her drinking habits. In order to tell whether a person is drinking too much, a general rule of thumb is to count the number of mornings this individual wakes with a hangover in a month. Any number that is greater than a week in a month generally indicates that the person is drinking far too much. In addition, watch out for telltale signs such as headaches or fatigue without the presence of alcohol in the body.