The differences in the effects of white and red wines

White or red? Moravian!

It is usually red wine we hear about in connection with the positive influence of wine on human health and its preventive effects when acting against cardiovascular diseases. This fact can be blamed more than a little on the French paradox. Although the French are not exactly a particularly sporting nation, where in France a significant number of smokers exist and where they indulge in foods containing a high content of carbohydrates and fats, yet it is one where the population is not much given to suffering from cardiovascular diseases. Scientists have confirmed that the reason is the regular consumption of wine and vegetables. And, as France is known above all for its red wines, they found the answer precisely there. But is this really true? The difference in the amount of favourable phenolic substances in wine generally, and the influence of white and red wine on human health, have since become the subject for a wide variety of health studies.

The contribution of beneficial phenolic substances to our health is, according to scientific research, almost always higher in red wine. This comes about primarily through the differences in the technology used in its production. Polyphenols are contained in the skins of the berries and, whereas in the production of white wine the crushed grapes are pressed with comparative speed, the juice for red wine initially spends some time fermenting with the skins. The must (grape juice together with the crushed berries) thus has the opportinity to take not only the colouring pigments from the skins but also the flavonoids. Even though the substances that act positively on our health are more verifiably contained in red wine, the researchers registered a greater diminution in the risk of cardiac arrest in those persons who unequivocally give precedence to white wine over red.

So eventually even the Czech scientists wanted to find out what really is at the heart of the matter. The fact though remains that regardless whether the colour of wine is white or red, it also depends on the place of origin of the grapes and in particular the soil composition. The first Czech study on this subject therefore focused on the effects on health of Czech and Moravian wines. At the conclusion of the study it was decisively revealed that white wine has a favourable influence on atherosclerosis or arteriosclerotic vascular diseases (ASVD). This means it has a direct influence on the occurence of heart attacks and strokes. At the same time white wine increases the so-called “good” HDL cholesterol in the blood. It is also interesting to note that the Czech study did not point out the same effects within the specified range in red wine.