Red wine is quite well known as being a particularly healthy drink. This is because it's derived from large amounts of grapes that are packed with several powerful compounds. The way that red wine is produced results in these compounds becoming concentrated into a form that is more bioavailable and effective.

While no alcoholic drink is healthy when consumed in large amounts or too frequently, drinking a small amount of alcohol has health benefits. The benefits of red wine are even greater because of its composition and these five benefits will help illustrate just what it can do.

Red Wine Is Anti-Inflammatory

Red wine contains several phytochemicals that help to reduce inflammation in your body. Some lifestyle diseases like heart disease and diabetes are intimately linked to chronic inflammation and a glass of red wine every day can reduce some of this inflammation.

Compounds like quercetin and resveratrol that reduce inflammation may even help to combat the risk of certain kinds of cancers. Of course, excessive alcohol consumption can have the opposite effect and this is one of the reasons why even red wine shouldn't be consumed in excess too often.

Reduces Skin Aging

Many of the phytochemicals in red wine are not only anti-inflammatory but also act as powerful antioxidants. They help to attenuate the damage from free radicals in your body and one of the major benefits from this antioxidant effect is a reduction of skin aging.

In addition to slowing the aging of your skin, conservative consumption of red wine helps to improve the appearance of your complexion through its anti-inflammatory effect and ability to improve cell renewal. A reduction in inflammation leads to skin that suffers less redness and maintains a clearer, more radiant complexion.

Prevents Blood Clots

Alcohol itself is very effective at preventing blood clots because it stops platelets from becoming too sticky and clumping together. This blood-thinning effect can reduce the risk of developing severe diseases like deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism that result from improper blood clotting.

The effect of red wine is even more powerful than alcohol alone though, and several compounds in red wine, like resveratrol, have been shown to reduce unhealthy clotting and lower the risk of disease that comes from it. The effect of alcohol and resveratrol can also be dangerous if your blood is too thin or you're taking blood thinners, so consult your doctor before drinking if that's the case.

Reduces Risk of Heart Disease

Red wine reduces the risk of heart disease through a combination of its effects as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and blood clotting inhibitor. It also decreases the oxidation of LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) and increases the amount of HDL cholesterol (the good kind).

Drinking any form of alcohol in moderation, including red wine, can even reduce blood pressure slightly, although binge drinking has the opposite effect and should be avoided. The combination of effects that red wine has on the cardiovascular system amounts to a powerful reduction in heart disease risk that can help to keep your heart functioning smoothly for years to come.

Reduces Risk of Diabetes

Finally, red wine also reduces the risk of diabetes slightly. Regular, light intake of red wine helps to boost insulin sensitivity in muscles, leading to better blood sugar control. The negative effects of binge drinking outweigh this boost to insulin sensitivity though, which once again shows how moderation is the key to unlocking the health benefits of red wine.

Too much of a good thing really can be a bad thing and when not taken to excess, red wine is a healthy, highly beneficial drink to start your afternoon or end your day. As long as you don't enjoy it a little too much, you can reap all the benefits it has to offer.