Most of us know by now that red wine is good for you. Like we needed an excuse to drink more wine! But it doesn’t hurt that drinking in moderation has certain proven health benefits. This revelation came back in 1991, when the news magazine show 60 Minutes aired a segment called “The French Paradox.” Since then, red wine sales have jumped 45% in the USA. And we all drink red and eat dark chocolate free of guilt.

The segment did more for the “cause” of wine and alcohol than any marketing scheme could ever do. It explored the benefits of sensible wine consumption, which is about 2 glasses a day. Shafer explained the French Paradox, how French people suffer a relatively low incidence of coronary heart disease, despite having a diet relatively rich in saturated fats. However, if you’re a middle aged American man, your chances of heart attack are three times greater than a Frenchman. Among other factors, wine was said to have significant health benefits that lower heart attacks.

Research suggests that moderate drinkers are less likely to suffer heart attacks than are abstainers or heavy drinkers. Red wines in particular is a source of low levels of resveratrol, natural chemical compound or polyphenol. High doses of reseveratol have been linked to cardiovascular health, longevity, cancer prevention in research.

While there are definitely other factors at play in the French Paradox phenomenon, such the typical lifestyle and diet of the French compared to Americas, red wine and resveratrol are proven to reap health benefits. For those who don’t consider wine a health food, think again!