Moderate Red Wine Consumption Can Reduce Dementia Risk

A recent study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center proves a little bit of red wine each week could do wonders for cognitive health. Amazingly, doctors involved in this research discovered moderate red wine consumption could decrease people’s risk for dementia.

Professor Maiken Nedergaard, who teaches in the University of Rochester’s Department of Neurology, was the lead author on this study. Nedergaard told reporters she was particularly interested to see how small amounts of red wine could assist the brain’s toxin-removal process known as the glymphatic system.

This particular study analyzed the effects of alcohol on mice’s brains. First, researchers looked at brain scans from mice who had a great amount of red wine every day over the course of a few weeks. Unsurprisingly, analysts found these mice’s brains became extremely inflamed.

Mice who only had a moderate amount of red wine each day, however, showed decreased brain inflammation. Study authors also noted that these mice’s glymphatic systems removed waste from the brain at a faster rate than mice who had no red wine at all.

There was no significant difference in the cognitive performance or motor skills in the mice that had a tiny bit of alcohol versus the control group. Mice who had an excessive amount of red wine, on the other hand, had severe cognitive issues.

To get the best healing benefits of red wine, most nutritionists recommend only drinking five glasses per week and no more than two glasses in one sitting. Each drink should be no more than half a glass.

A few additional well-studied benefits of red wine include enhanced cardiovascular health and diabetes management. Health experts recommend going for the darkest red wines on the market for the most antioxidant benefits.

Nedergaard gained worldwide acclaim when she first described the glymphatic system in 2012. Further studies have revealed this system works by using cerebral spinal fluid to flush out harmful substances from the brain’s tissues. Besides drinking a bit of red wine, experts recommend exercising regularly and getting a good night’s sleep to keep the glymphatic systems healthy.

Scientists published this full study in the latest edition of Scientific Reports under the title “Beneficial effects of low alcohol exposure, but adverse effects of high alcohol intake on glymphatic function.”

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