It’s been a long day. You spilled coffee on your pants, your boss yelled at you and your date was cancelled. So now you’re cozied up on the couch with your favorite television show and a big glass of wine. You see the bottle across the room and you contemplate having an extra glass. Go ahead, it’s healthy for you.

Those who exercised and drank wine showed significant improvements with their cholesterol levels, according to the European Society of Cardiology. Previous studies have shown that people who drink wine are healthier than those who don’t.

“In general any alcoholic beverage in moderate doses will increase your HDL [good cholesterol] and decrease your LDL [bad cholesterol],” said Donald Slish, professor and chief premedical advisor at Plattsburgh State.

Slish said that consumption of wine or any other alcoholic beverage can decrease your chances of a stroke and heart attack if you limit yourself to one or two drinks a day.

“There’s this stigma with alcohol because of people over doing it,” Kimberley Emery, chef instructor in the hotel, restaurant and tourism management program said.

“If you do everything in moderation, you’ll be good,” Emery said. “It’s crucial to also exercise and have a healthy diet as well. It’s not the more you drink the healthier you’re going to be.”

Wine has been found to relax blood vessels and is even good for cleaning out your kidneys and the rest of your system.

“You would think that the French wouldn’t live very long because of their fatty diet, but they live quite long because they have relaxing meals and have a glass of wine on the side,” Colin Read, co-owner of the Champlain Wine Company, said.

Read said people don’t usually like the taste of wine right away, but they learn to appreciate it. “A glass of wine can get you relaxed… forget about the stresses of the day and focus on a nice meal,” he said.

Red wine has long been considered healthier than white wine because of the way it is grown and the antioxidants it contains. The juice and skins are kept together so it absorbs many of the ingredients in the skins, Read explained.

Though red wine has its benefits, doctors have stressed to not over indulge and bring up the risk of alcohol abuse if drinking habits are not taken seriously.

Read said red wine is more likely to be paired with a meal while white wine is more of a causal drink.

The French and Italian have adopted the slow food movement, which involves slowing down life’s pace, including the consumption of food.

Enjoying your meal more slowly, appreciating the food and the people you’re with, it can have a relaxing effect and lead to a healthier life, Read said.

Also the American diet, which is constantly on the go and consists of unhealthy food is not conducive with wine.

“You’re faster paced when you’re younger but learn to appreciate things and slow down — people can evolve,” Read said.

People are more drawn to wine than beer because every glass of wine is different than the next glass. “It’s something to be enjoyed, it’s unique and subtle,” Read said.

What separates wine from other beverages is that most people drink wine to enjoy and savor each sip.
“You’re not going to gulp down a glass of wine as you would a soda,” he said.

Email David Luces at david.luces@cardinalpointsonline.com.

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