Alcohol gets very mixed reviews in the health profession. In my opinion, like food, everything is ok in MODERATION.
Red wine in particular has the benefit of being a good source of antioxidants, specifically, resveratrol (RSV). Like AVNs in oats, resveratrol is an phytoalexin, which is important to the grape plant as a form of protection from UV rays, infection, injury, and fungal attack.
RSV is found in grape skin, mulberries and peanuts. Red wine uses the grape skin during fermentation, whereas white wine does not, thus red wine is much higher in RSV and gets more press.
RSV acts as an antioxidant, and helps to activate or inactivate various important proteins in your body. Your body is constantly making new new cells to replace old or damaged ones, RSV plays a role in stabilizing the proteins that help to regulate this activity. This extra stability helps to prevent cancer by stopping mutation, and also has a positive effect on aging.
RSVs also help to prevent cancer in others ways, such as inhibiting cyclooxygenase (COX), which increases cell proliferation (we do not want a lot of proliferation), and limits immune surveillance.
In a nut shell: COX is bad, and RSV stops COX. RSV helps prevent cancer, which is good!
RSV is also thought to contribute to the "French Paradox" of the french eating a relatively high saturated fat diet, yet having low rates of cardiovascular disease. Perhaps it is all that red wine they are drinking that is acting as an antioxidant and protecting their cells!? maybe?
…More research is needed!
Note: The Negative effects of excessive alcohol consumption seriously outweigh any of the positives. Alcohol can ruin you physical health, mental health, and social health. If you are going to drink, drink in moderation, (a maximum of 1 drink a day for females, 2 drinks a day for males.)