Over the last few years, extensive studies have been performed demonstrating the health benefits of wine. Wine (especially red wine) has shown to promote a longer lifespan, improve mental health, protect against certain cancers, stave off diabetes and protect against heart disease.
Health benefits of wine were noted long before our time. Hippocrates, known as the “father of western medicine” and whose oath I recited upon graduation from medical school, promoted wine as part of a healthy diet. He suggested patients use wine to ease the taking of medications, and recommended its use to disinfect wounds, alleviate pain during childbirth, and even combat lethargy. Many other “physicians” of Greek and Roman times encouraged wine drinking to aid with digestion, sinus problems and dementia.
Because safe drinking water was scarce throughout history, many turned to wine as a drink of choice. During a cholera epidemic in Germany in 1892, wine was even used to sterilize water.
Now, at Music City Plastic Surgery, I can’t recommend all the above medical uses for wine. Science advancements have proven some, if not all of these, uses for wine as inappropriate or as less than acceptable. However, these physicians were on to something. Even, Jesus, the “greatest physician of all” turned water into wine. He must have known wine is beneficial.
A GLASS A DAY
The component responsible for the health benefits of wine is resveratrol found in the skins of red grapes (as well as peanuts and berries). Resveratrol belongs to a group of plant compounds called polyphenols and are thought to have antioxidant properties. These antioxidant properties might help protect the body against a number of diseases, fight inflammation within the body, and help repair cellular damage, including:
Resveratrol helps decrease inflammation, reduce oxidation of the LDL (bad) cholesterol and prevents clumping of platelets that might lead to a heart attack.
The reduced stickiness of the platelets helps keep the blood vessels open and flexible and may be beneficial for mental health. This helps maintain good blood flow to the brain.
Studies from Spain showed that moderate wine drinkers were less likely to be diagnosed with depression. I know a little bit of wine makes me happy too.
Various types of cancer can be prevented or the spread halted because resveratrol is thought to encourage cancer cell death (apoptosis). Studies have shown that moderate red wine consumption may reduce the rate of bowel tumors by approximately 50%. Breast Cancer, a topic close to our hearts at my Nashville plastic surgery practice, may have decreased development in wine drinkers. This is thought to occur because the chemicals found in the skins and seeds of red grapes decrease the estrogen levels and increase the testosterone levels in premenopausal women (resulting in a lower risk of developing breast cancer).
Resveratrol helps prevent insulin resistance, which if left unchecked can lead to diabetes.
Resveratrol may prevent plaque build up in the brain that may lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
Shhhh!! Not necessarily a secret I want my Music City Plastic Surgery patients to know about, but, oh well…Resveratrol has shown to improve the health of mice on a high-calorie diet and improve life span. The antioxidant component also can encourage cellular repair from sun damage and maintain your beauty.
ABOUT A VINTAGE AFFAIR
At A Vintage Affair, we are committed to helping women and children in need in Williamson County. Since its inception in 2001, AVA has contributed over $1.2 million to local non-profit organizations. Now in its 15th year, AVA has decided to partner with fifteen organizations as beneficiaries this year in order to help as many in need as possible. Various events include wine, spirit and food tastings, silent and live auctions, The Grape Stomp, A Fashion Affair, A Vintner Dinner, A Vintage Affair Goes Country, Meet the Vintner and A Vintage Affair Main Event.
As a board member for A Vintage Affair, and a founding physician for Music City Plastic Surgery, I felt it was my duty to educate our patrons and patients to the benefits of wine and help us all feel a little better about doing our part. By participating in A Vintage Affair, you can not only help those in need, but you just might improve your health in the long run. Check out their website for more information and/or to purchase tickets.
1 glass of wine a day Attendance at (a minimum of 1) A Vintage Affair event this year.