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Red wine can cleanse the brain of toxins
There have been several studies that document the benefits of consuming red wine on heart health. Researchers have now found that drinking a glass or two of red wine regularly is also good for the brain and can even seem to protect against Alzheimer's.
The University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) scientists found in their investigation that consuming small amounts of red wine works against inflammation and can rid the brain of toxins. The experts published the results of their study in the scientific reports.
How does wine affect the brain?
In their research, the doctors examined how both excessive and low alcohol consumption affects the brain of laboratory mice. To do this, they particularly analyzed the way in which the brain is freed from toxins. The way it works is somewhat similar to a rinse.
A substance known as cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is pumped into the brain tissue, where it eliminates the toxic substances. The experts explain that certain toxins, such as beta amyloid and tau, which are associated with Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia, can be removed.
Too much wine is bad for the brain
When the mice were exposed to high alcohol levels for a long period of time, some of their motor and cognitive abilities decreased and their brains became highly infected. However, if the mice consumed the equivalent of two and a half glasses of wine a day, the brains of the affected animals would cleanse themselves more effectively than if they had not consumed wine at all, the researchers report.
Low to moderate alcohol consumption can lower the risk of dementia
Other studies have already shown that low to moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a lower risk of dementia, while heavy drinking triggers an increased risk of cognitive decline for many years, explains author Maiken Nedergaard from the University of Rochester Medical Center.
Alcohol can actually be good for the brain
This is the first time that research has shown that alcohol can be good for the brain, even though the positive effects of low amounts of red wine on the human heart were already known, the experts explain.
Red wine contains important antioxidants
For example, a recent Louisiana State University study found that compounds in wine can help with surgical treatments. The doctors reported the results of this research in a press release. In so-called coronary angioplasty, in which a small balloon is inserted into the body to expand clogged or narrow arteries, which should facilitate blood flow and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, red wine can certainly be useful. Over time, the risk of the balloon not being sufficient to prevent blockage and narrowing of the arteries increases.
The red wine is helpful in such a case because it contains two important antioxidants that can prevent inflammation: resveratrol and quercetin.
Red wine can prevent blood clots and inflammation
By administering red wine antioxidants during conventional angioplasty, excess tissue can be prevented from building up and blood vessels constricting as they heal, explains author Dr. Tammy Dugas. The doctor used a so-called stent (a short tube that is small enough to fit into a blood vessel) to slowly release the antioxidants contained in the red wine in the body. In this way, blood clots and inflammation can be prevented. (as)