We've all heard drinking a glass of wine a day can improve health by warding off heart attacks, but is this just wishful thinking? If you do no exercise, the answer is probably yes.
Researchers from the European Society of Cardiology have shown wine does have the potential to protect against cardiovascular disease, but only in combination with regular exercise.
Over a year-long period, they studied the effects of drinking both red and white wine on 146 people at risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The participants were randomly selected to consume red Pinot Noir or white Chardonnay-Pinot from the same year and wine region in the Czech Republic. Each person had to keep a logbook of their drinking habits, medication use, and the amount and type of exercise they did.
After the year of drinking was over, scientists compared the levels of HDL cholesterol in the participants, since a rise in this type of cholesterol is a strong sign of increased protection against heart disease.
They found moderate wine drinking was only protective in people who exercised, with red and white producing the same results.
Professor Milos Taborsky, lead researcher in the study, said: "The only positive and continuous result was in the subgroup of patients who took more exercise, which means regular exercise at least twice a week, plus the wine consumption. In this group HDL cholesterol increased.”
"Our current study shows that the combination of moderate wine drinking plus regular exercise is protective against cardiovascular disease."
Bottoms up to that...