When it comes to Indian male get-togethers, aka “togo sessions,” beer is the usual choice. But how about trying something different for a change, such as a wine appreciation session?
The significant health benefits of drinking wine (particularly red wine) far outweigh that of gulping down pints after pints of beer. A lot of these benefits of red wine come down to a remarkable ingredient called polyphenol, which is found abundantly in red wine (216mg/100 ml), compared to white wine (32 mg/100 ml) and beer (12-52mg/100ml).
Polyphenols are a class of plant compounds commonly found in plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, tea, berries, and grapes. To date more than 8,000 types of polyphenols have been identified. They can be categorised into four main groups – flavonoids (60% of all polyphenols), phenolic acids (30% of all polyphenols), polyphenolic amides and other polyphenols.
The type of polyphenols found in red wine are resveratrol (other polyphenols). The amount of resveratrol found in any red wine depends on the region the grapes from which they are extracted come from. Dark red and purple grapes have a higher concentration of resveratrol.
In addition, the more traditional wine-making techniques – fermenting the grape skins – contribute to the higher concentrations of resveratrol in red wine.
The health benefits of polyphenols are due to their ability to act as antioxidants – the ability to reduce chronic inflammation that damages cells, increasing one’s propensity to heart disease.”
Health benefits of polyphenols/resveratrol
The following are some health benefits of polyphenols, including resveratrol:
Reduction of blood sugar levels
By lowering blood sugar levels, polyphenols reduce the risk of contracting or worsening type 2 diabetes. They achieve this by breaking down starch into simple sugars. Compared to complex sugars, simple sugars reduce the extent of post-meal blood sugar spikes.
In addition, polyphenols stimulate insulin secretion. Insulin is the hormone that transports sugar from your bloodstream into your cells, energising you and controlling your blood sugar level. Too much sugar in your bloodstream is what contributes to type 2 diabetes.
Reduction in risk of heart disease
The health benefits of polyphenols are due to their ability to act as antioxidants – the ability to reduce chronic inflammation that damages cells, increasing one’s propensity to heart disease.
Polyphenols lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels while increasing good cholesterol. All three are integral to reducing heart disease.
Protection against cancer
There is mounting scientific evidence that diets rich in plant foods contribute to a lower risk of cancer. Experts believe that this is due to polyphenols’ strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Some studies have also suggested that polyphenols may block the progress of some types of cancer such as breast cancer and prostate cancer.
Prevention of blood clots
Blood clots are a necessary biological response to prevent excess bleeding, by clumping together. However, when blood clots are excessive, they contribute to various complications such as stroke, deep vein thrombosis or blockages in your pulmonary arteries (the vessels that send blood to your lungs). Polyphenols can reduce your risk of developing excessive blood clots.
Polyphenols contribute to digestion by stimulating the growth of healthy gut bacteria, while providing protection against harmful ones. There is also some evidence that suggest that polyphenols help probiotics to thrive and reproduce.
Healthy brain function
There is also growing evidence that suggests that foods rich in polyphenols improves memory and focus by improving blood flow to the brain. Among dementia patients, it has also been linked to improvements in brain activity and short-term memory.
Private wine tasting session
Unleash your inner wine connoisseur and bond with your friends like never before at CornerStone Wine’s private wine tasting session. Whether you’re a wine enthusiast or just curious, this experience will take you on a journey of discovering and savoring the diverse flavors of wine. Gather up to five friends and embark on a truly unforgettable adventure.
Tell us what you do to stay healthy. It does not have to be related to wine drinking. Readers with the 10 best responses stand to walk away with a bottle of Mt Monster Cabernet Sauvignon 2020. Email to: email@example.com your response, including your name, mobile number, email address and postal address. The 10 best responses will be published on SG:Indian. This promotion is valid from 11th to 31st December 2023. SG:Indian’s decision will be final.
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