HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Sunday, February 1, 2009

SuperBowl - Try Some Red Wine to Celebrate

More news that red wine is good for you.  Newsweek reports on some new studies that red wine has powerful effects beyond just being an intoxicant.  Tina Peng writes,

It's common knowledge that a glass or two of red wine a night will do more than enhance a great meal or put you to sleep: it can reduce production of "bad" cholesterol, boost "good" cholesterol and reduce blood clotting, all of which will help reduce the risk of heart disease. But recent studies are showing that wine aficionados may also reap even more benefits, from inhibiting tumor development to helping form nerve cells. Here's a roundup of four recent studies that might encourage you to uncork that bottle of merlot:

1. It Can Help Keep You Fit: For senior citizens who are already in shape, moderate alcohol intake can help prevent the development of physical disabilities, according to a new UCLA study in the American Journal of Epidemiology. . . . But don't take that as a cue to rest easy: the benefits only applied to seniors who were already in good health. Seniors in poor health may already be too close to developing disabilities for the wine to be of much use, researchers said.

2. It May Help Fight Alzheimer's. In animal trials, UCLA researchers found that compounds known as polyphenols, which naturally occur in red wine, can inhibit the development of proteins that deposit in the brain and form the plaques associated with Alzheimer's disease. . . .

3. It Boosts Heart-Healthy Omega 3 Levels. Moderate alcohol consumption helps boost the body's omega-3 levels, European researchers report in the January issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. . . .

4. It May Lower Lung Cancer Risk. Moderate consumption of red wine may decrease the risk of lung cancer in men, researchers reported in the October issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention. . . . .

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