Toast to Healthy Red Wine Tannin

Science & Math | | March 18, 2007 at 19:35

You hear a lot of buzz today about the benefits of drinking red wine and according to Science News, Dec 2, 2006, there seems to be some scientific basis for it. But researchers from Scotland have shown that not all red wines are equal. Apparently wines with the highest concentrations of polymeric procyanidins are the most beneficial for cardiovascular health. These compounds are found among wine??????? tannins. Wines with the highest concentrations of these specific tannins are grown and consumed in Southwestern France and on the Italian island of Sardinia. Census data for cities throughout France showed that those living in the southwest have the longest life spans. This news might give French wines a boost in a market saturated with wines from California, South America and Australia.

The polymeric procyanidins inhibit the body??????? production of enotehlin-1, a compound which constricts blood vessels. Most doctors agree that narrowed blood vessels are a contributor to heart attacks and stroke. Polymeric procyanidins belong to a larger group called polyphenolics, which have been shown in some studies to help diabetes, obesity and some neurological diseases. This is more good news for consumption of red wine, although the medical community hurries to advise us that one-two glasses a day is recommended, not the ??? bottle to 1 bottle regularly consumed by the avid wine drinkers and connoisseurs I know.

The high concentration of tannins is a by-product of the traditional wine-making techniques of those two regions of France and Italy. The article suggests that other wine-producing regions might find advantage in re-examining their production techniques as more health-conscious consumers become aware of the benefits of sipping wines with high tannin concentrations.

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