The aim of a review published in Alcohol and Alcoholism was to focus on the knowledge of the cardiovascular benefits of moderate alcohol consumption, as well as to analyse the effects of the different types of alcoholic beverages.
The study used human clinical studies and meta-analyses related to moderate alcohol consumption and cardiovascular disease (CVD) from 2000 to 2012. According to the authors, ‘Heavy or binge alcohol consumption unquestionably leads to increased morbidity and mortality. Nevertheless, moderate alcohol consumption, especially alcoholic beverages rich in polyphenols, such as wine and beer, seems to confer cardiovascular protective effects in patients with documented CVD and even in healthy subjects’.
The authors conclude that wine and beer (but especially red wine) seem to confer greater cardiovascular protection than spirits because of their polyphenolic content. However, they stress that caution should be taken when making recommendations related to alcohol consumption.
Source: Wine polyphenols add to the protection of alcohol against cardiovascular disease. Chiva-Blanch G, Arranz S, Lamuela-Raventos RM, Estruch R. Preventative effects of wine, alcohol and polyphenols on cardiovascular disease risk factors: Evidences from human studies. Alcohol Alcoholism 2013;48:270-277.