Although this may sound a bit too good to be true, it actually is. Why? Because red wine is rich in substances with powerful antioxidant properties. Let’s find out more about the role of red wine in the process of cognitive decline.
Studies prove it
The National Institute of Aging funded a study conducted by the Rush University Medical Center based in Chicago. The results of the study were published in the Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.
They revealed that the onset of dementia can be delayed by drinking just one drink of red wine every day. Scientists enrolled 960 adults with an average age of 81.4 years. Their cognitive abilities declined at a slower pace than prior to drinking a glass of red wine a day for 4.7 years. The subjects were also on a strict diet, they called it the MIND diet. This is similar to the Mediterranean diet with some changes.
Recently, 60-80% of dementia cases are due to Alzheimer’s disease thus making it the 6th leading cause of death in the United States. This statement pertains to a nutritional epidemiologist at the above mentioned university, Martha Clare Morris.
How does red wine act?
Resveratrol is found in grapes and hence in red wine. This substance is an active compound that brings positive physiological effects. Apart from its impact on cognitive function, resveratrol also prevents heart disease, lowers LDL cholesterol and can act as a mouthwash due to certain compounds called flavan-3-ols that kill some bacteria in our mouth.
The linings of your arteries are protected and this allows blood to flow properly to the brain thus improving cognitive function. Cell aging is slowed down by reducing oxidative stress. The production of a powerful inflammatory agent called nf kappa b is inhibited.
Your muscle mass is spared thus avoiding a condition called sarcopenia. As we grow older, the muscle mass decreases by 1-3% per year leaving us with more fat. Resveratrol slows down this process thus prolonging the health of your muscles and preventing you from becoming weak and fatter.
If you want to benefit from all these benefits, you should consider taking resveratrol supplements, you can’t possibly drink enough red wine to enjoy all these. Make sure to discuss it with your doctor before you purchase any supplements. This is also a great option for people with history of alcohol abuse.
Moreover, abnormal cell replication is prevented thus suppressing cancer cells. This effect was studied on cell cultures and is yet to be determined in animal and human subjects.
Another great advantage is that red wine has only 100 calories per glass being the most calorie friendly beverage according to a registered dietitian named Leah Kaufman.
What about white wine?
Unfortunately for those who love Chardonnay, white wine does not contain the same compounds as red wine and has little effect on your health. If you plan on drinking anyway, you may as well switch to the red type. It is best to drink the wine at dinner to avoid troubles during the day.