I briefly mentioned in my “What Are Superfoods And Why Are They Good For You?” post that I had made the switch from hard liquors to red wine. It is not only delicious on its own, but I have recently even tried cooking with it, like adding it in sauces for my continental dishes, and it worked amazingly well.
There are so much research and studies to back that drinking one glass of red wine for women and two glasses for men a day has proven beneficial for heart health and could even fight certain types of cancer. While there is ample evidence to prove these findings, drinking copious amounts of red wine could damage the body like any other alcoholic drink would, so moderation is the key here.
How Is Red Wine Made & The Different Types?
Red wine is produced by harvesting, crushing, and fermenting dark grapes. This is more or less the same procedure that has been followed in making great red wines in wineries for thousands and thousands of years. From the kind of grapes that are harvested to the way, it is pressed, barreled, and stored in the cellar decides the kind of red wine that is produced. Unlike white wine, in red wine, the skin is not separated while crushing, so the red wine is allowed to ferment with the skins, which makes the flavor profile greatly vary from white wines. Yeast and sulfur dioxide is added to preserve the wine while it ferments. There are a variety of different red wines available in the market. Each has its own color, flavor profile, and alcohol content. The longer it is fermented, the more complex its flavors become. Some of the most popular types of red wine are cabernet sauvignon, merlot, shiraz, pinot noir, and port wine.
Health Benefits Of Red Wine
The dark grapes used in making red wine contain a rich natural antioxidant called resveratrol, which is present in grapes’ skin. Antioxidants help get rid of the free radical damage in the body. It also helps reduce oxidative stress, which lowers the risk of cancers and heart disease. There are so many studies that drinking red wine moderately has proven to help with heart health. The polyphenols present in red wine help with gut microbes, thus helping with keeping the gut healthy. Since the moderate intake of red wine is healthy, it also helps those with type 2 diabetes and blood pressure. Another health benefit of drinking a glass of red wine daily is it lowers the risk of cancer, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and vision loss while helping the liver and brain’s health. Last but not least, red wine also helps with anti-aging.
Potential Health Risks Of Red Wine
Since drinking in moderation is pretty crucial here, if one drinks more than the recommended intake, then there are several health risks that red wine poses. Some of them are fatty liver, heart problems, stroke, pancreatitis, and certain types of cancer.
Different Ways To Consume Red Wine
Drinking red wine is the best way to consume it. You should decant your wine so if there’s any sediment that would settle to the bottom of the decanter. I personally like to oxygenate and chill my red wine before drinking it. Pour one third to the glass and swirl it around so the wine could oxygenate even further to bloom its flavor profile.
If you’re someone who wants to experiment but despises drinking wine or any alcohol directly, then try adding it to your cooking. This not only helps you try different dishes that call for wine, but you also reap the benefits of red wine. Let me list some of my favorite dishes that use red wine in one or the other way.
- Salad Dressing – Mix it with extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper for a refreshing salad dressing.
- Spaghetti or Ragu Sauce – A great way to bring complex flavors to your sauce.
- Vegetable or Meat Stew – Let this cook slowly for the flavors to combine and create a divine concoction.
- Coq Au Vin – Marinate overnight for the best results.
- Lamb Chops – Lamb pairs amazingly well with red wine so is the red wine sauce with shallots and rosemary.
- Pork Tenderloin – Don’t throw away the pan drippings and reduce it for the best glaze.
- Cod in Red Wine Sauce – A flaky fish like cod, is the perfect texture for the wine sauce to stick onto.
- Chocolate Cake – How can I end my article without mentioning dessert at least once? Bake sinful chocolate cake by adding a little bit of red wine to it.
The Bottom Line – Even the most healthy foods and drinks are to be consumed in moderation, so please, while there are so many benefits of red wine and other alcohol, don’t get carried away and drink too much. Drink responsibly. I hope you liked the article; please let me know in the comments below. Until next time, stay healthy!