Say Cheers to Red Wine.

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Just when everyone is on the search for the best diet to have good looks as well as a healthy long life, it is surprising to note that French in spite of having an atrocious diet lived longer with a healthier life. There was absolutely no need for them to go for crash diets to lose weight fast .

The average diet of a French person contains 108 gms of fat per day from animal source when compared with an American who consumed only 72 gms, much from vegetable source. The French also consumed comparatively higher quantity of butter, cheese and pork, but lived longer and healthier. This observation is known as the “French Paradox” and is also observed in the Mediterranean basin, where it is called as the “Mediterranean Effect”.

The consumption of red wine by the French is considered as the key factor attributed to the Paradox. The red wine contains antioxidants such as the Resveratol was said to be the active ingredient. Dr. David Sinclair the co founder of the Sirtris, with his associates have done research on mice with Resveratol, which they believed to be the protective component of the red wine.

It was on 30th of November 2006, CNN, CBS news, Forbes and The Washington Post unanimously reported that it was not Resveratol but the Procyanidins found in red wine that are responsible for their health benefits.

Roger Corder, the author of “The Red Wine Diet” basically had three questions to be studied. 1. How does Red Wine reduce heart disease?
2. What is the protective component? 3. Do all red wines confer the same benefits?
This led him to study many interesting aspects of the geographical distribution of people with respect to consumption of red wine and the benefits derived by them.

Procyanidin is an antioxidant which is present in all red wines but some do posses these protective chemicals more than the rest. The Red wine made from the Tannat grapes is found to contain highest concentrations of this antioxidant.

The inner lining of the blood vessels gets deposited with the damaged (oxidized) fat molecules and calcium. This obstructs the normal flow of blood and can result in complications like high blood pressure (hypertension) and coronary heart disease. This dangerous condition is called as arthrosclerosis. The Procyanidin molecule gets utilized by deoxidizing these fat molecules and prevents their deposition in the blood vessel, thereby increasing their function. According to Roger Corder this antioxidant causes profound changes in the blood vessel function. Procyanidin present in the red wine also gives rise to a number of cardiovascular benefits, such as reduces blood clot, improves healthy cholesterol metabolism and relaxes the blood vessels.

Sardinia is the second largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, and is an autonomous region of Italy. Roger Corder found the residents of this place with high concentration of centenarians (people who live to hundred years of age) and attributed it to their consumption of red wine, being a part of the Mediterranean diet .

Alsace is the place with highest heart disease and lowest longevity in France is found to be a white wine drinking area, is another interesting fact pointed out by Roger Corder.

White wine has less procyanidin comparing to red wine. White wine is made from fermenting only the fruit but in red wine the crushed seed and skin are also fermented with the fruit and hence contains more of the protective chemicals. The longer fermentation produces higher concentration of the Procyanidins. He also suggests that people who do not consume red wine may still have the benefits of procyanidin by consuming dark chocolates and certain berries.

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