Drinking a Glass of Red Wine is as Healthy as an Hour at the Gym

Drinking a Glass of Red Wine is as Healthy as an Hour at the Gym

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A University of Alberta study found that resveratrol, a component of red wine, has physical fitness benefits

Next time you’re watching Netflix with a glass of wine, you can tell people you’re working out!

Attention wine-lovers: scientists have just unveiled the holy grail of facts about red wine. According to a study by scientists at the University of Alberta, consuming a glass of red wine has the same physical performance, heart function, and muscle strength benefits as working out for an hour at the gym. Just think of all that time spent sweating it out at spin class when you could have been lazing about, sipping some wine instead.

How could this be? Scientists found in the study that the chemical resveratrol, naturally found in red wine, has numerous health and heart-positive benefits, including improved physical performance, heart function, and muscle strength. Red wine could actually enhance the cardiovascular benefits of exercise.

“I think resveratrol could help patient populations who want to exercise but are physically incapable. Resveratrol could mimic exercise for them or improve the benefits of the modest amount of exercise that they can do,” Jason Dyck, the principal investigator for the study, told Science Daily.

This is the best news we’ve heard in a long time. Cabernet over cardio any day of the week.

Best News Ever For Wine Drinkers

Dear red wine drinkers: I have wonderful news. A new study says that drinking a glass of wine can equate to an hour of exercise. I repeat: Drinking a glass of freaking merlot could be just as good for you as an hour of working out at the gym. Feel free to commence rejoicing at this time.

The researchers responsible for the glorious study — which was published in Journal of Physiology in May — discovered that resveratrol, a "natural compound" found in certain fruits, nuts, and (you guessed it) red wine, could actually "enhance exercise training and performance." But there's more. Jason Dyck, the principal investigator for the study, tells Science Daily that resveratrol can also offer the same benefits working out does:

The only bad news? Not-red wines don't count (sorry, Chardonnay-lovers), and it only works with one glass — so chugging a bottle a week doesn't equate to four to six gym sessions. But don't let those little, itty bitty downsides take away from the bigger picture here.

So if this is true, what are all of the other benefits only sweet, sweet wine, red or otherwise, can provide? We're all aware that wine is one of the healthier choices you can make when consuming alcohol, but just how healthy is it?

According to Leah Kaufman, a registered dietitian, wine is the "most calorie friendly" alcoholic beverages, adding up to only 100 calories in a typical five-ounce glass. Kaufman mentions that wine also contains antioxidants and can help prevent heart disease, as well as lower bad cholesterol and the formation of blood clots. Another bonus? Apparently red wine acts as a mouthwash because the flavan-3-ols in it can reduce "bad bacteria" found in your mouth. I'll just give all of the Olivia Popes out there another moment to continue rejoicing:

Other than the fact that red wine still qualifies as an alcoholic beverage, which isn't exactly the greatest thing you can put into your body, it's still good to know that indulging in a little red vino can do more than just make your teeth blue. An hour's worth of cardio more. Cheers to that!

How Alcohol Slows Weight Loss

Even drinking in moderation can add calories to your diet, and if you're not accounting for the occasional cocktail, you may end up with a few extra pounds around your waistline. Moderate drinking, as outlined in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, is defined as up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men, and only by adults of legal drinking age.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's FoodData Central, a 16-ounce bottle of beer has 206 calories, and a glass of wine has 153 calories. If cocktails are your drink of choice, a regular-sized rum and cola will add approximately 175 calories and a White Russian, which contains vodka, coffee liqueur and heavy whipping cream, will add over 325 calories to your daily totals.

But it's not just the calories from alcohol that wreak havoc on your weight. It's also the plate of nachos or extra slices of pizza that pile on the pounds. A study published in the March 2015 issue of Current Obesity Reports found that when alcohol consumption goes up, the discipline to make smart dietary choices goes down. This means that it's easier to indulge in high-fat and high-sugar foods while sipping on a few alcoholic beverages.

4 Reasons Why Drinking Actually Helps Your Exercise Efforts

With the holiday season finally past, many people are trading in their cork screws, bottle openers and shakers for gym memberships. In fact, some people swear off booze all together in January, but before you join the crowd and exchange a glass of red for the treadmill, read up on how wine and beer, combined with exercise, can actually be a good thing.

To Get Red Wine’s Heart Benefits, You Need To Both Drink A Glass AND Exercise

Researchers from the European Society of Cardiology studied people who consumed a moderate amount of alcohol for at least 5 days a week. They separated the individuals into those that drank and exercised and those that only drank. In the individuals that only drank, the researchers found, there was no appreciable affect on their cholesterol, blood glucose, triglycerides, or levels of inflammatory markers like C-reactive protein. But in the people that worked out as little as twice a week, the wine had a dramatic impact on cholesterol levels, causing the researchers to conclude that wine consumption combined with exercise is beneficial in preventing cardiovascular disease.

Wine And Beer Consumption Create Endorphins That Motivate Us To Work Out

Ever notice how after working out, all you really want is a refreshing beer or nice glass of wine? It turns out researchers have uncovered that wine and beer release endorphins in our brain that we use as a reward and motivation for working out. When the endorphins from exercising and the ones from drinking are combined, meaning we consume a glass shortly after our workout, they create a reaction our body remembers and wants to replicate again and again. Meaning, we subconsciously encourage ourselves to hit the gym the next day in order to have a beer again following the workout. So if you actually want to use that gym membership you just guiltily signed up for, grab a beer after your first workout.

36 Gifts and Gadgets For Anyone Who Loves Drinks

Beer Could Be Better Than A Protein Shake

After that crossfit class you just got talked into attending, most people are gonna grab a protein shake, but you might want to grab a cold beer instead – added bonus it’ll help with all those sore muscles you’re bound to have. Why beer? Because it contains nutrients, among them selenium (which contains antioxidants), B vitamins (which aid in energy), phosphorus (which is said to help with strong bones and teeth), and niacin (which is possibly beneficial to cholesterol). Moreover, beer packs in a good amount of protein, a bit of fiber, and silicon, which some sources say can prevent osteoporosis. These are all nutrients that researchers say are ideal for your body to consume after hitting the gym. Just don’t grab a high-gravity option. Stick to a sessionable beer and you’ll get all the nutrients you needs, without overdoing the alcohol.

Wine Can Help Burn Fat And Keep It Off

Researchers at both the University of Nebraska and the University of Florida discovered that ellagic acid, which is found in grapes, dramatically slowed the growth of existing fat cells and the formation of new ones, boosting metabolism of fatty acids in liver cells. But drinking red wine alone isn’t enough, as the ellagic acid only slows fat growth, it doesn’t burn fat. That’s where exercise comes in. In combination the exercise allows you to shed the pounds in the first place and a moderate amount of red wine could help you keep it off.

So don’t swear off wine and beer entirely if you’ve resolved to hit the gym in the new year, simply consume them in moderation. Their benefits could aid in your success.

Glass of Red Wine Equals 1 Hour at Gym, New Study Says

In this Jan. 25, 2014 photo, a man pours a glass of Erasmo wine at the Reserva de Caliboro vineyard in Maule Valley, Chile. A bold new wave of independent vintners are challenging Chile’s reputation for producing oceans of agreeable but predictable wines. (AP Photo/Luis Hidalgo)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – The Huffington Post on Friday reported on a new study out of The University of Alberta that shows that drinking a glass of red wine may have the same affect on the body as an hour at the gym.

A component in the wine, resveratrol, was seen to improve physical performance, heart function and muscle strength similar to the effect exercise has on the body.

Principal investigator Jason Dyck said, “I think resveratrol could help patient populations who want to exercise but are physically incapable. Resveratrol could mimic exercise for them or improve the benefits of the modest amount of exercise that they can do.”

“It is very satisfying to progress from basic research in a lab to testing in people in a short period of time,” Dyck said.

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Your Weight

While one glass of red wine each night isn't likely to wreak havoc on your weight, it might invite other habits that can.

For many folks, drinking wine leads to mindless snacking. One glass of red wine packs around 120 calories, so over the course of a week, you'll take in an extra 840 calories. If weight loss or weight maintenance is your goal, try to limit yourself to two to three glasses of wine per week.

If you're set on your glass-every-night habit, try diluting 3 ounces of wine with 2 ounces of sparkling water or try to cut around 840 calories per week by making these small tweaks.

Wondering how to calculate your calories for weight loss? Download the MyPlate app to do the job and help you track your intake, so you can stay focused and achieve your goals!

Hard Seltzer vs. Beer

When it comes to food (as you’ve probably heard!), calorie counting is not the most effective strategy . With alcohol, however, calories are a really helpful measurement. Since you’re not getting any nourishment from imbibing, it makes sense to minimize the number of empty calories you’re taking in.

With that in mind, most of the trending hard seltzers clock in at about 100 calories per 12 ounce can, which is pretty low. It’s lower than most beers, although some lighter ones like Michelob Ultra (95), Miller Light (96), and Corona Light (99) are comparable.

Hard seltzers are also generally gluten-free (not all of them, so be sure to check!), which is a plus for Celiacs and anyone with a gluten sensitivity. And they contain about two grams of carbs, which is lower than most beers (at typically between 10 and 15 grams), although, again, beers like Mich Ultra contain less than three grams.

When it comes to ABV, hard seltzers contain about the same amount of alcohol as a beer, at around five percent (I’m talking about typical beers, not a double IPA!). But, be sure to read your labels—more products are entering the market every day with higher alcohol content (like 8-9%), and that’s not a surprise you’ll want to learn the hard way.

Hands up who&rsquos never ditched their workout to go and get explosively drunk at the nearest bar? Few hands there. Hands up who&rsquos lying? Same few hands. Right. It happens. Sometimes the day has not been conducive to a muscular midday or after hours gym sesssion, and all you want to do is drink &lsquotil you can&rsquot feel feelings anymore. Understandable, but the concern does remain: My physique and wellbeing must be suffering for this. I am burning the temple that is my body.

Being people who like to get drunk too, researchers at Canada&rsquos University of Alberta harbored the same misgivings. Instead of limply theorizing about what must surely be self-evident, they decided to investigate the matter (with funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, humorously). Their findings, published in the Journal of Physiology, were as surprising as they were awesome: One glass of red wine will improve the same level of physical performance, heart function and muscle strength as one hour sweating it out in the gym.

Even on paper signed, stamped and delivered by science, this feels unlikely. What&rsquos the go? It all comes down to resveratrol, a compound found specifically in red wine &mdash that&rsquos the only hooch that counts in this scenario. If you don&rsquot like red, you&rsquore out of luck. The research team put one set of rats on a 12-week training regimen and spooned them said compound throughout. They put another set of rats on the same regimen, but without any red wine goodness. After 12 weeks, the wino rats showed a 21% increase in &lsquomuscle performance.&rsquo

&ldquoWe were excited when we saw that resveratrol showed results similar to what you would see from extensive endurance exercise training,&rdquo said lead researcher, Jason Dyck. &ldquoI think resveratrol could help patient populations who want to exercise but are physically incapable. Resveratrol could mimic exercise for them or improve the benefits of the modest amount of exercise that they can do. We immediately saw the potential for this and thought that we identified 'improved exercise performance in a pill&rsquo.&rdquo

He&rsquos not wrong about that: Resveratrol in its &lsquopure&rsquo form is already on the market in light of its science-backed benefits in much the same way as coconut oil&rsquos MCT has been packaged in recent years. However, to buy it in its de-wined form would also be to forego the other proven benefits of red wine, namely its antioxidants, and the fact that it helps reduce &lsquobad&rsquo cholesterol and assists in preventing blot clots. Oh, and then there&rsquos the way it promotes longevity, lowers the risk of cataracts and colon cancer, reduces the risk of Type 2 Diabetes, and slows down the rate at which your brain stops being brainy. Best thing? Even the dirt-cheap red you chuck a tenner at before visiting the in-laws is good for it.

In conclusion: Call off the search for the fountain of youth, for thou hath been quaffing its waters in the Saturday night gutters of distressing modern life for some time now.

Potential Health Benefits of Red Wine

  • May protect your heart: Red wine may have several cardio-protective effects, and a recent review revealed that drinking red wine was linked with a lower risk of developing heart disease. But the American Heart Association points out a potential issue with the current research, stating that there is no established cause-and-effect link and several other factors, such as dietary habits, may play a role. For example, if you drink red wine every night then you may also be following a Mediterranean Diet which might be to thank for the heart healthy benefits.
  • Can combat inflammation: Red wine is abundant in certain polyphenols including resveratrol, anthocyanins, catechins, and tannins (proanthocyanidins and ellagitannins). Resveratrol in particular is found not just in red wine, but also in foods such as grapes, peanuts, chocolate, and certain berries. Research suggests that the phenolic compounds in red wine exhibit antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Not only does the research suggest that red wine consumption can reduce insulin resistance, but it can also decrease oxidative stress.
  • May sharpen your mind: The flavanols in wine may protect your body's cells that support healthy blood vessels &mdash a key physiological benefit that can improve blood flow to the brain and prevent harmful plaque from developing. Animal studies suggest that resveratrol in particular may prevent age-related memory decline.
  • Can promote longevity: Blame it on the relaxation effects of imbibing. Long-term population studies have linked moderate alcohol drinking to a longer life. Research also suggests that it is possible to strengthen the effect of resveratrol with a balanced diet that emphasizes nutrient-dense foods packed with dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals (similar to the Mediterranean diet). So pair your glass with a healthy meal!
  • May improve mood:Studies has linked moderate alcohol intake to a better mood (and you thought that was just hearsay!). A 2014 study showed that people who had a glass of wine in an unpleasant environment experienced the same level of mood improvement as people who teetotaled in a more pleasant environment.

Will Red Wine Kill Your Workout?

Are antioxidants the anti-gym? In a new Danish study, men who took supplements of resveratrol&mdashthe powerhouse antioxidant found in red wine&mdashsaw their cardiovascular benefits from exercise shrink by 45 percent compared to guys who popped a placebo.

But don't put down that glass of vino just yet. A closer look at the numbers reveals that the men in the study took a 250-milligram (mg) supplement of resveratrol&mdashexponentially more than what you&rsquod find in everyday foods and drinks. For example, red wine contains between 1 and 9 mg of resveratrol per bottle. (You&rsquod have to knock back almost 28 bottles in one sitting to take in 250 mg. Read: not recommended.) And in general, antioxidants like resveratrol are good for exercise, since they reduce inflammation to aid recovery.

Large doses, though, give muscles too much of a free pass. Exercise generates some &ldquobad&rdquo free radicals&mdashwhich high doses of antioxidant supplements can completely suppress. While you'd think you&rsquod want that, doing so limits your body's ability to recover on its own, says Michael Joyner, M.D., an exercise researcher at the Mayo Clinic. You need some free radicals to &ldquoturn on&rdquo the recovery process, help your body adapt to stress, and improve performance, Joyner adds.

The bottom line: Less is often better. Stick to sources like blueberries, dark chocolate, peanuts, and red wine to reap the benefits of antioxidants. Bonus: You'll also get other health-promoting vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients from the foods.

Watch the video: Is A Glass Of Red Wine Equivalent To An Hour At The Gym? (August 2022).