From Mediterranean vineyards to the bottle rack in your kitchen, red wine has been enjoyed for centuries. Almost synonymous with a cultured palate, it’s hard not to appreciate the taste and texture of a glass of red wine. You might be surprised to find that this sophisticated drink is loaded with anti-aging benefits for your body – inside and out.
The magic comes from red wine’s antioxidants. The dark skin and seeds of the grapes are rich in polyphenols, a type of antioxidant that includes resveratrol. They protect cell membranes and have anti-inflammatory properties.
Red wine is full of them because the grapes’ skin and seeds are part of the fermenting process, as opposed to how grape juice is made, where skin and seeds are removed. The darker the wine, the better it is for you and your skin. The antioxidants in red wine soak up damaging free radicals that play a role in aging and age-related diseases.
Consuming just 1 glass of red wine a day for women and 2 glasses a day for men has been proven to provide a variety of benefits for your heart. If you have high cholesterol, you may have plaque buildup in your arteries, which can cause them to harden. Too much plaque will eventually stop blood flow and can cause a heart attack. Wine reduces cholesterol and inflammation to minimize this risk. It stabilizes the plaque by keeping those pathways open. Because it’s good for your arteries, it also helps to bring oxygen and blood to your skin.
Polyphenols protect the skin from UV light and keep it elastic. It also strengthens the cross-linking of collagen, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Studies also show that people who drink red wine have fewer cancerous skin lesions.
If you cannot consume alcohol, you can get these same benefits from taking a resveratrol supplement, or a grapeseed oil scrub made from the seeds/skins of red wine grapes. You can also try eating dark chocolate, blueberries, or pomegranates – all of which have a high concentration of polyphenols and provide the same benefits.