Let me just make something clear here from the off, I am not going to let hyperbole colour this article based on the findings a study. I will not give into the demand for cheap sensationalism, extrapolating unfounded statements from a study. It will at no point develop into a runaway train whereby I make grand sweeping claims like, 'it's healthy to drink red wine' which was not in any way a substantiated finding of the study. In fact, I very much intend for this article to be the exact opposite of a runaway train. It will proceed in an orderly fashion, adhering to the speed-limit, and should we at any point sight any large farm animals that've wandered onto the tracks, we will stop this train for the safety of all concerned.
To clarify, this article is about a medical study and not about trains.
A study has shown that - with heavy caveats - drinking red wine may be, slightly - not exactly healthy - but perhaps less unhealthy than drinking other alcoholic drinks. The study, was performed by a team of scientists in King's College London who were looking to study the varying impacts on people's gut health from drinking beer, red wine, white wine, cider and spirits. The study was performed on 900 sets of female twins; one twin would've acted as the control and the other as the study's subject.
It was discovered that the gut microbiome of those who drank red wine was more diverse than those who drank the other drinks. Speaking about the study's results, Dr. Caroline Le Roy, one of its authors said, "While we have long known of the unexplained benefits of red wine on heart health, this study shows that moderate red wine consumption is associated with greater diversity and a healthier guy microbiota that partly explain its long-debated beneficial effects on health."
The study's findings were corroborated by other group tests performed in the US and the Netherlands.
Now, having said all that, let's not run away with ourselves and say you should go out drinking. The last thing I want you to take away from this article is the idea that red wine is perhaps some elixir to a longer life. Let's just be clear here, the study suggests that all drinking is quite bad for you, but there may be some associated health benefits from drinking red wine - though, on balance, the deleterious effects of consuming alcohol are not outweighed by any possible benefits. This is certainly the case if you are to drink red wine in bulk, it remains as equally damaging as other forms of alcohol.
Indeed, the component of red wine that seems primarily responsible for any resultant health benefits, polyphenol, can be found in many other foods.
Dr. Le Roy added, "Although we observed an association between red wine consumption and the gut microbiota diversity, drinking red wine rarely, such as once every two weeks, seems to be enough to observe an effect. If you must choose one alcoholic drink today, red wine is the one to pick as it seems to potentially exert a beneficial effect on you and your gut microbes, which in turn may also help weight and risk of heart disease."
H/T: The Irish Times