Enjoying a glass of cabernet sauvignon or merlot is not only relaxing but also healthful. People have long studied the health benefits of wine. Red wine in particular has long been touted as a heart healthy beverage, with its rich antioxidants increasing the amount of good cholesterol and protecting artery walls in the body. One of the antioxidants found in red wine, resveratrol, may be responsible for strengthening blood vessels and preventing blood clots, reducing the risk of heart disease. Resveratrol comes from the skin of grapes. Red wine has more resveratrol than white wine because it is fermented with grape skins for a longer period of time. Still, people can get this healthful antioxidant from white wines, or simply by consuming grapes, grape juice, peanuts, cranberries, or blueberries.

In recent years, in fact, researchers have acknowledged that red wine is not the only heart healthy form of alcohol; white wines, beer, and liquors, when consumed in moderation, can have positive health benefits as well. By raising HDL cholesterol, the good kind, and protecting arteries from LDL cholesterol, the bad kind, alcohol can reduce the risk of coronary disease. As far as nutrition goes, wine restores balance in the body, provides some vitamins and minerals, increases energy, and aids digestion.

Moderation is important. Health organizations do not encourage non-drinkers to take up drinking. However, for those who already imbibe, they can optimize the health benefits by limiting themselves to two drinks a day for men and one drink a day for women. People who cannot drink alcoholic beverages can still improve their nutrition and antioxidant levels with monavie, a juice rich with nutrients, acai berry, and other superfoods. Packaged in attractive bottles similar to wine bottles, monavie is a tasty, albeit expensive, alternative to wine. Whether it’s with wine or nutritional juice, maintaining a strong heart and body is invaluable.