7 Reasons to Drink More Wine in 2021

Paige Comrie


Dry January? No thanks! After the year we had, I think we all deserve to ring in 2021 the right way, glass in hand! With 2020 safely in the rearview mirror, here are 7 reasons to keep the wine flowing, all year long!

1) Wine is good for your heart

And your soul. ;) All joking aside though, if you’re looking to reduce your risk of heart attack or cardiovascular disease, a daily glass of red or white can lead to a healthier heart.

Resveratrol in red wine is known to reduce fat accumulation in arteries and improve heart function. Generally, wines with thicker skins and heartier tannins have greater levels of this compound.

For you white wine drinkers out there, don’t fret! According to a study published in the Journal of Agricultural Food and Chemistry, white wines with high levels of the antioxidants tyrosol and hydroxytyrosol provide similar heart benefits. Good news for wine drinkers across the board!

2) Wine improves Lung Function, Strengthens Bones, and Builds Muscle

Can you replace your workout with a glass of wine? Probably not, although it does have some similar benefits.

In one study, participants who drank one to two drinks per day had stronger, heftier bones than the group that abstained. An interesting caveat to this study… This effect only holds up for the female population, and has not been witnessed in men (here’s to hoping another study is on the way!)

When it comes to muscle growth, however, both genders can rejoice: wine has been shown to enhance the effects of strength training on muscle growth. While I wouldn’t recommend pregaming your gym session (um, yikes! Been there, done that, it’s definitely not fun!), unwinding after your workout with a glass or two could be a great idea.

White wine has also been linked to healthy lung function, similar to a cardio workout. University of Buffalo researchers reported, "drinking wine recently and over a lifetime was associated with better lung function." This fascinating study evaluated approximately 1,500 people with varying alcohol consumption and lifestyle habits. Participants were given a lung-function test, and based on the findings, the wine drinkers "had the highest levels of protective antioxidants in their blood" and better lung function.

3) Wine Improves Memory & Lowers Risk of Dementia or Alzheimer’s

According to a study published by researchers at the University of California in Los Angeles, compounds in red wine help to stimulate activity in the brain, which could work to counteract the onset of dementia.Those who are over the age of 75 who consume 2 glasses of wine every day can lower their risk by 37%.

Again, this benefit is thanks to Resveratrol, the substance responsible for many of the benefits of red wine; the benefit is due to an increase in the number of brain connections made by wine drinkers to eventually improve memory.

When you sip your wine intentionally, you can also help build these connections. According to a study on Sommelier’s brains, scientists report that sommeliers experience “heightened activation in the right olfactory and memory regions of the brain” while performing an olfactory task — i.e. smelling and tasting wine.

In other words, the parts of sommeliers’ brains that deal with smell tend to be more “specialized” and thicker than the average person’s. This benefits the memory: incoming smells are first processed by the olfactory bulb, which is directly connected to two parts of the brain strongly implicated in emotion and memory, the amygdala and hippocampus. That’s why certain aromas, such as your mother’s clothing, freshly baked cookies, or a candle can trigger such strong memories.

According to the study, sommeliers’ specialized olfactory systems could mean that they are less susceptible to neurodegenerative diseases than the average person. You don’t have to be a professional Somm to reap this benefit though -- just take time to connect what’s in your glass with meaningful aromas and memories. Continued training and practice will result in positive brain changes; the more wine you smell, the more specialized your brain can become. Learn more about how to drink wine intentionally and identify aromas in an online course, 7 Days to Wine Confidence.

4) Wine Improves Your Immune System

With everyone looking to stay healthy this winter, you may wonder if that glass of wine is really okay to have. And it is! A recent study suggests that wine can help fight dangerous flu systems -- the secret is in wine’s gut-healing power. Our gut bacteria is responsible for so much of our health, and when certain gut bacteria thrive, your immune system thrives, too.

Antioxidants in red wine feed the good bacteria camping in your gut, acting as a prebiotic — these bacteria boost digestion and make you overall healthier as a result. The more nutrients your digestive system absorbs, the better!

Additionally, in a separate European study, researchers showed that wine drinkers exhibited higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids than any other group studied. Omega-3s are the “good fats” — they help fight cancer, lower blood-pressure, and boost our overall health. Omega-3’s are found in salmon, almonds, and eggs, so pair your wine back to one of these foods to help lock them in and boost your immune system more.

5) Wine Can Lead to Healthier Skin

Everyone knows that wine is full of antioxidants. These compounds can help reduce the development of wrinkles and fine lines and improve your overall appearance by preventing or slowing damage to cells caused by free radicals.

And if you need another reason to love Resveratrol… this compound inhibits the growth of bacteria that causes skin inflammation. That inflammation shows up as unwelcome acne. So drinking wine can help banish breakouts and keep your skin glowing.

6) Wine Can Help Shrink Your Waistline

There are numerous studies that dig into wine and its effect on weight. According to one study, moderate wine drinkers tend to have smaller waistlines and less abdominal fat than people who prefer to drink beer or liquor. In addition, healthy women who indulge in one glass of wine regularly are 70% less likely to gain weight over 13 years than women who abstain.

Why is this? In addition to the health benefits already mentioned, drinking moderate amounts of alcohol improves blood flow, which means not only are more nutrients being transported into cells, but so is more oxygen-- and oxygen is a necessary component of fat burning.

A glass of red wine also affects our hormone levels. By increasing adiponectin and free testosterone, your body is able to burn more fat and build muscle. At the same time, wine decreases estrogen, which causes the body to retain fat. Together, this formula creates a more diet-friendly environment, releasing stored fat and increasing metabolism.

7) And of course…Wine is Delicious

Wine is sophisticated, delicious, and goes with food. It pairs well with cheese and chocolate, two of the basic comfort foods. And it’s great for unwinding after a bad day… or celebrating on a good day.

Basically, drink wine because you like it! You don’t really need more of a reason than that. #treatyoself

Just remember, as great as this all sounds, there’s a threshold of when alcohol goes from harmless or even helpful into troublesome territory. These positives mentioned are specifically meant to cover light to moderate drinking -- just one glass of wine, occasionally.

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Paige Comrie is a Certified American Wine Expert and holds her WSET3 Advanced Certificate in Wine. She's passionate about helping connect consumers with great bottles of wine, and inspiring people to live the "wine lifestyle". This phrase, to her, means elevating the everyday, enjoying the little moments, and taking time to sip and savor everything life has to offer. In addition to wine and food, Paige also writes on the subject of Social Media and Digital Marketing, specifically focusing on the wine industry. Follow her on Instagram @winewithpaige

Napa, CA

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