5 Pretty Fascinating Things to Know About Wine

two glasses of red wine

You don’t need our permission to wind down with a glass of vino. Enjoy the taste, and bask in those oft-reported health benefits: One glass – that’s one glass — of red wine a day is good for heart health, is antioxidant-rich, may protect against some cancers and extend your life. But there’s more to learn. Before you clink a glass and sip, take in some interesting trivia about wine.

Drinking wine may improve your sex life.

Hello! Got your attention? Yes, a 2009 study on a group of healthy Italian women found that one or two glasses of red wine increased a woman’s libido compared with other alcoholic beverages. Researchers said they believe red wine contains compounds that increase blood flow to all the “right places.” It’s worth a try!

It won’t give you a muffin top.

Unlike beer, wine is associated with a healthy waistline.  A 2010 study found that women who had a couple of glasses daily were less likely to be overweight, compared with non-drinkers. In fact, they carried almost 10 pounds less body fat! Does that mean go drink a bottle? No, but a 5 ounce serving is a better choice than a glazed donut.

Women process wine differently than men.

OK, not just wine but alcohol for that matter. According to the National Institutes of Health, the reasoning has to do with our body water. We’ve got less, and so that means women achieve higher concentrations of alcohol in the blood after drinking even the same amount of alcohol as a man. And, apparently our bodies are short on an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase, which breaks down alcohol in the stomach. Thus, women are unable to process as much wine before it enters the bloodstream. Basically, we’ll get tipsy first. Drink wisely and in good company.

It can cause your rosacea to flare up.

If you’re one of the small population of Black women who deal with this skin disorder, drinking red wine is not the best idea. Those with rosacea will experience a reddening of the skin, along with bumps and pimples. Is it worth it?

The shape of your glass can help you drink less.

The wine goblet is the classic glass for enjoying wine. But if you’re trying to cut back, you might choose a more narrow option, one study showed. Researchers from Iowa State and Cornell universities tested how shape, size and color of a wine glass affect how much you pour. People tend to pour more if the glasses are wider. They also tend to over-pour when they’re holding the glasses in their hands, and when the glassware doesn’t match the color of the wine. Why? Experts say people have trouble assessing volume, and that they focus more on the horizontal than the vertical. Results from the study of just 73 participants found that a wider glass was linked with 11.9 percent more wine being poured, holding the glass was linked with 12.2 percent more wine being poured, and high color contrast between wine and glass  was linked with 9.2 percent more wine being poured.

Fascinating, right? OK, now you can drink up!

Josyln Murphy is non-alcohol drinking, freelance writer in Brooklyn, NY.

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