Red wine is full of a number of healthful ingredients. This is largely because the grapes used to make red wine are full of nutrients, including valuable antioxidants that could reverse the damaging effects of free radicals.
Grapes contain an important chemical called “resveratrol.” This is the ingredient found in red wine that is being touted for its health benefits in all sorts of medical journals. Red grapes are high in resveratrol and so it is red wine, not white, that has the most beneficial effects as far as your health is concerned. Red wine has been found to reduce bad cholesterol and boost cognitive function.
Now, a recent study has found that moderate red wine consumption could cut your risk of developing cataracts in half. The clinical trial was part of a larger study called the Reykjavik Eye Study. For five years, researchers investigated the risk factors for age-related eye disease in 1,045 people, all over the age of 50.
A total of 846 people were included in the cataract study. Participants in the trial all underwent lens imaging to determine whether they had cataracts. A cataract is a clouding of the eye lens that can cause vision to become blurry or impaired. Each participant also completed questionnaires on their medical history and diet.
At the end of five years, participants’ eyes were re-examined and they filled out questionnaires detailing their alcohol consumption. Everyone was then characterized in terms of their alcohol consumption as: lifetime abstainers, former drinkers, people who consume less than one drink per month and drinkers – those who consume more than two drinks per month.
Of the 846 participants, 318 were classified as drinkers, with 300 of them considered moderate drinkers and 18 considered heavy drinkers. Moderate drinking was loosely defined as ranging from two drinks per month to two or three per day.
After five years, the research team found that 32% of the non-drinkers and 22% of the drinkers had cataracts. After accounting for age, smoking habits, diabetes, and other factors, the researchers concluded that moderate wine drinkers reduced their incidence of developing any kind of
cataracts by about 50%, compared to non-drinkers.
Remember: moderate red wine drinking is the key to improved health. Excess drinking can lead to liver problems, high blood pressure, and more. Remember that if you are taking medications, including blood thinners and some kinds of antibiotics and pain relievers, or you have liver or pancreatic disease, you may need to abstain from alcohol altogether. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns.