Wine Can Indeed Make You Happier
Wine “offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing,” said Ernest Hemingway, yet the famed author may have been surprised to discover that the ‘happy factor’ bestowed by wine actually has scientific grounds. One of the most recent studies on the link between wine and mental health was published in July, 2019 by researchers at the University at Buffalo. The study found that resveratrol – the powerful compound that is also strongly linked to heart health – has an anti-stress effect, inducing a more relaxed, peaceful state in those who enjoy its goodness.
Not All Alcohol Is Alike
If you’ve had a stressful day at work, red wine is a good choice, owing to its resveratrol content. The University at Buffalo scientists found that this compound can help stave off depression and anxiety by blocking an enzyme that contributes to stress and depression when present in abundance. They went so far as to say that resveratrol could just be an alternative to medication for treating patients with depression and anxiety. Of course, moderate consumption is recommended, since the consumption of excessive alcohol carries other health risks.
A Glass Of Wine And A Time And Space For Zen
Moderation is ideal, but it can be difficult to limit your wine intake when you're unwinding after a tense day at work. Why not make your favorite red part of your daily stress-busting routine, which can also involve essential oils, meditation or yoga, and even a warm bath before bed? Meditation is a powerful stress buster, with many studies showing that it has the ability to lower levels of stress hormone (cortisol), even after short-term practice. The good news is that you can start off small and include the whole family, with mindfulness sessions lasting as little as five minutes, by following an app like Calm or Headspace – used in many settings to start the day with a peaceful state of mind. After meditating or performing a few yoga poses and practicing your breathing, few things may appeal more than sitting on your terrace enjoying a full-bodied red with your loved ones.
Keep It Light For Maximum Effect
Another study by Alfredo Gea et. al. backs up the claim regarding moderation. It found that the lowest rates of depression are found in people who drink two to seven small glasses of wine per week. 'Alcohol intake, wine consumption and the development of depression: the PREDIMED study,' which involved over 5,500 people aged 55 and 80, showed that wine in small amounts might have a similar protective effect to the one it has on heart disease. Scientists believe that depression and coronary heart disease actually share many similar mechanisms.
Wine, like all good things, does wonders for body, mind and spirit when consumed in moderation. Studies indicate that light consumption has the most powerful effect in terms of staving off depression, so keep it to a glass or two at night for full effect. Make sure that wine is just one component of a daily stress-busting routine, so that you can always rely on breathing or meditation when your day has been particularly tense.