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How Much Wine Is Too Much Wine?

How Much Wine Is Too Much Wine?

You may have heard that drinking wine is good for your health. Moderate consumption of wine has been shown to improve heart health, protect against some cancers and enhance mental health, according to research. Red wine in particular contains flavonoids and other antioxidants which may help boost HDL (“good”) cholesterol and reduce coronary artery disease.

While that’s exciting news for some, does that mean you can drink as much as you want?

The noted health benefits only apply to moderate drinking, which the 2015-2020 U.S. Dietary Guidelines and the American Heart Association define as no more than one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men.  And some people shouldn’t drink at all.

One serving of wine is 5 ounces, but many people pour more than that into a single glass. So don’t just count the number of glasses you drink because you’ll likely be consuming more than recommended.

The Dangers of Drinking Too Much

Although moderate consumption of wine may provide protective health benefits, drinking more than that can negatively affect your health, especially if you’re a woman. Female drinkers are at greater risk for developing alcohol-related health problems than men.

Here are some health risks associated with drinking alcohol:

  • Heart disease. More than one glass of wine a day can raise your blood pressure as well as your risk for cardiomyopathy, cardiac arrhythmia and sudden cardiac death.
  • Stroke. Heavy or binge drinking has been linked to an increased risk of stroke.
  • Breast cancer. Women who have more than one drink a day have a 10% higher risk of developing breast cancer than non-drinkers.
  • Liver disease. Excessive alcohol consumption can damage your liver. 
  • Weight control. At 120 calories per 5 ounces, drinking a glass or more of wine each day can make it hard to maintain a healthy weight.
  • Pregnancy. Drinking when you’re pregnant puts the baby at risk for learning problems and other health issues.

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