Health Benefits of Red Wine

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INTRODUCTION
Studies show that the consumption of red wine is a much more healthful drink compared to all other alcoholic beverages.
This paper examines red wine and the daily consumption of red wine as a health related behavior. The paper proposes that the daily consumption of red wine is a health benefit for individuals in that it lowers the risk of heart disease, prevents the development of Alzheimer’s disease, and slows the aging process. There are some reservations regarding the daily consumption of red wine such as the risk of alcoholism and over-consumption, but these are somewhat negligible. Even though most of society claims to be aware of some of the benefits of red wine, the medical community should do more to promote the daily consumption of red wine in America.

HEALTH AND BEHAVIOR
Prevalent research, popular literature, and common sense, all indicate that living a healthier lifestyle extends the life-span and the overall quality of life for the average human being. One lifestyle change that can be readily implemented is drinking red wine daily and in moderation. It has been shown that societies in which red wine consumption is prevalent tend to experience lower levels of heart disease and coronary related deaths (Szmitko & Verma, 2005). Yet, given the predominance of this conclusion, why do many people refuse to modify their behavior and behavior patterns to conform to the principles of a healthier lifestyle?

While there are many explanations, and each in its own right is valid, there seems to be a rational blind spot on the part of individuals who live an unhealthy lifestyle, to persist in harmful behaviors, even though it runs counter to common sense—or what some researchers refer to as experienced based knowledge. If, as Witt, VenDerHeyden, and Gilbertson stipulate, “Behavior is a function of the person interacting with the environment…”(2004, p.363), then rationally blind behavior such as: smoking, eating an unhealthy diet, and lack of exercise, are an individual’s behavior demonstrating clear rejection of perceived authority or ignorance due to educational failings or economic failings. Drinking red wine as a component of an overall lifestyle program and behavioral change is an important consideration for many people. The characteristics of an effective exercise regimen for the average adult that can be included with such habits as drinking red wine daily are: “The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recommended that most adults…be physically active for at least 30 minutes most days of the week” (The Exercise Prescription, 2005, p.1). This type of regimen requires serious behavior modification for the adult who has been sedentary for any period of time. These are the same types of behavior modifications that should be undertaken when introducing daily intake of red wine. The amount of commitment and support an adult needs to adjust to such daily programs and lifestyle changes is significant when examined in terms of the socio-economic factors. Yet, often the healthcare establishment does not do enough to motivate individuals to develop an effective daily wine drinking habit or an exercise regimen for that matter. Persisting in unhealthy behaviors is not only foolhardy, but potentially deadly, and steps to redress the reasons for not adhering to the principles of a healthy lifestyle must be taken within the population. Witt, VanDerHeyden, and Gilbertson suggest that to begin a behavior modification program, or an intervention program, one of the first steps to be taken is to examine the potential efficacy of the intervention itself (2004, p.366). A program of drinking red wine on a daily basis is one potential outcome of a lifestyle change that can benefit the average individual. Red wine is proposed because it, more so than other forms of alcohol, tends to benefit the health of the individual to a greater degree. Researchers have found that drinking...
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