Wine has surprising benefits for the flu, common cold & sore throat

Drinking a glass of red wine a day can reduce the chances of catching the flu or a cold. Resveratrol and other polyphenols in red wine have potent antiviral properties, while low doses of alcohol prevent the replication of many viruses, which cause the flu and the common cold.


QUIZ: Benefits of Wine for Immunity

Benefits of red Wine for Weight Loss and good Health.


How often could I drink red wine?


Red Wine is rich in…


What’s the best time of the day to drink Wine?


How much red Wine should I drink a day for good health?


Red wine supports weight loss.


Is Wine beneficial for the common cold?


Alcohol suppresses the Immune system.


Drinking red wine may lower the risk of common cold

The flu and the common cold are both respiratory illnesses, caused by hundreds of different viruses.

Common symptoms of the flu and the common cold are fever, cough, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, muscle aches, headaches and fatigue.[1] 

Drinking a glass of red wine a day seems to be beneficial for preventing a cold. According to studies, red wine intake may have a protective effect against the common cold.[2]

White wine, beer, spirits, or other alcoholic beverages don’t seem to affect the incidence of the common cold, though.

Red wine is rich in polyphenols, which have potent antioxidant properties. These compounds may lower the risk of the common cold.

Additionally, wine’s phytochemicals promote weight loss.

Furthermore, red wine and grape juice can inactivate various viruses! Actually, red wine has antiviral effects. On the contrary, white wine can’t inactivate viruses as effectively.[3]

Is alcohol in wine beneficial for a cold?

Red wine reduces the risk of common cold, mainly due to its superior antioxidant and the anti-inflammatory capacity of polyphenols. But, alcohol may play a role as well.

Actually, according to studies, alcohol itself may have a beneficial effect on reducing the incidence of the common cold. It seems that people who regularly drink low doses of alcohol have a significantly lower risk of having the common cold.[4]

In fact, airway temperature may be one of the key factors for the survival and replication of viruses that cause the common cold.

Benefits of Wine for the flu, common cold & sore throat.Pin

Alcohol intake increases airway blood flow and temperature. Higher body temperatures prevent the replication of many viruses that cause the common cold. For instance, rhinoviruses, which cause most colds, replicate best at temperatures lower than 33 °C. On the contrary, they get attenuated at temperatures higher than 37 °C.

The average temperature in the upper respiratory tract is 32 °C.

First, alcohol increases airway temperature, as it stimulates nitric oxide, which is a powerful vasodilator. Alcohol intake increases blood nitric oxide concentrations for several hours. You could also eat plenty of foods rich in nitric oxide for better immune responses.

Also, alcohol increases airway temperature because it increases the blood’s acetaldehyde levels. This compound causes vasodilation as well. This effect lasts up to 4 hours.

Hence, daily drinking of a light dose of alcohol seems beneficial for the protection against viruses.

Therefore, a glass of red wine at lunch every day may protect from upper respiratory tract infections, such as the common cold.

Drinking too much alcohol has negative effects on health, though.

How often should I drink wine for protection from the common cold?

Daily drinkers of small amounts of alcohol may be more protected from the common cold, as compared to “weekend” drinkers. Even if both consume the same amount of alcohol.

The best time to drink a glass of red wine is at lunch. Drinking alcohol before bed negatively affects sleep quality and duration.

Resveratrol in wine may protect from the flu

Red wine protects against the flu and common cold because of its high concentrations of resveratrol. Resveratrol has potent antiviral effects. For instance, resveratrol protects from several viral diseases, as it inhibits viral protein synthesis and viral-related gene expressions.[5]

Does wine boost my immune system?

Certainly, excessive drinking can severely affect the immune system. High alcohol intake suppresses the immune system and significantly increases the risk of development of many infectious diseases. It promotes the generation of free radicals during detoxification.[6,7]

On the contrary, moderate red wine consumption doesn’t suppress the immune system, as compared to other alcoholic beverages.[8,9]

Practically, the amount of alcohol in a glass of red wine won’t negatively affect the immune system.

Actually, red wine boosts the immune system, despite its alcohol content because it greatly increases the plasma antioxidant capacity. Phytochemicals in red wine have such powerful antioxidant actions that offset the detrimental effects of alcohol on immunity.

If you want to boost your polyphenol intake, you could drink grape juice as well. Grape juice is also pretty rich in polyphenols. Additionally, grapes are good for weight loss.[10]

Why shouldn’t I drink more than a glass of red wine a day?

Consuming more than two glasses of red wine, or any alcoholic beverage, can have negative effects on your immunity. Remember, moderation is key. While some studies suggest moderate red wine consumption may have health benefits, exceeding recommended limits can have detrimental effects on your immune system and overall well-being.

Firstly, excessive alcohol intake weakens the immune system by disrupting the balance of immune cells and impairing their ability to fight infections. Also, it triggers inflammation in the body, which can hinder immune responses.

Alcohol interferes with nutrient absorption, leading to deficiencies in vitamins (such as vitamin C) and minerals (like zinc), essential for immune health.

Health tips: Traditional home remedies with Wine to alleviate symptoms of the flu, common cold & sore throat.Pin

Adequate rest is crucial for a robust immune system. Overconsumption of alcohol disrupts sleep quality.

Alcohol harms the gut microbiome, affecting the balance of beneficial bacteria. A healthy gut is linked to better immunity. A diet high in fiber (e.g. beans, fruits, vegetables) along with probiotics (e.g. kefir, Greek yogurt) keeps your gut microbiota healthy. It’s crucial to follow such a diet after the use of antibiotics.

Moreover, alcohol is dehydrating, which weakens immune responses. Proper hydration is essential for immune function.

The liver processes alcohol, and excessive consumption strains it. A stressed liver affects overall health, including immunity.

Can red wine relieve the symptoms of sore throat?

Furthermore, red wine has potent antimicrobial action. For instance, wine can deal with oral pathogens, such as Streptococcus pyogenes. Streptococcus pyogenes causes sore throat, which is actually inflammation of the pharynx.[11]

Should I drink a glass of red wine a day to boost my immune system?

It seems that a glass of red wine a day is good for you! But, many people shouldn’t drink alcohol at all. Consult your physician before changing your diet.

Certainly, if you don’t drink, you shouldn’t start. You better start consuming more fruits and vegetables to get more health-promoting phytochemicals. It’s highly recommended to eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.[12]

How to drink red Wine to alleviate symptoms?

Here are some traditional home remedies that combine red wine with various spices and herbs to help alleviate symptoms of the common cold, flu, or sore throat:

  • Garlic-infused red wine: Crush a few garlic cloves and add them to a glass of red wine. Let it infuse for a few hours. Sip this concoction to benefit from garlic’s antiviral properties and red wine’s warmth.
  • Honey-lemon-ginger elixir: Mix honey, lemon juice, and grated ginger. Add a splash of red wine. This elixir combines antimicrobial properties with soothing warmth. Honey is packed with powerful antioxidants!
  • Lemon and red wine tonic: Squeeze lemon juice into a glass of red wine. Lemon is high in vitamin C, which may weaken cold and flu viruses and reduce phlegm.
Health tip: Drinking red Wine for the flu, common cold & sore throat.Pin
  • Ginger-infused red wine: Add ginger slices to a glass of red wine. Allow it to steep for a few hours. Ginger’s antimicrobial properties can help fight infections, and red wine adds warmth.
  • Onion and honey syrup: Combine chopped onion with honey and a splash of red wine. Let it sit overnight. Strain and take a spoonful as needed. Onion soothes coughs, and honey provides antimicrobial benefits.
  • Sage and thyme tea: Brew a strong tea using sage and thyme. Add a splash of red wine for warmth. Sage and thyme are excellent for respiratory infections and sore throats.
  • Cayenne-infused red wine: Mix a pinch of cayenne powder into a glass of red wine. Cayenne brings heat to the body, dispelling coldness. It also has antimicrobial properties.

Enjoy these remedies responsibly and in moderation!

Always consult a healthcare professional. Especially if symptoms persist or worsen.

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