Raise a glass! New research from King’s College in London suggests that people who drink red wine in moderation have a higher diversity of gut microbiota, a key sign of gut health, than those who don’t IFLScience.com reports.
The study explored the effects of beer, cider, and red and white wines on the gut microbiomes of 3,000 drinkers in the US, UK, and the Netherlands. Researchers found that red wine drinkers had the greatest number of different bacterial species. They also found that red wine consumption was associated with lower levels of obesity and ‘bad’ cholesterol.
“While we have long known of the unexplained benefits of red wine on heart health, this study shows that moderate red wine consumption is associated with greater diversity and a healthier gut microbiota that partly explain its long debated beneficial effects on health,” study author Dr. Caroline Le Roy said in a statement.
The authors believe this connection is due to the high number of polyphenols found in red wine.
“This is one of the largest ever studies to explore the effects of red wine in the guts of nearly three thousand people in three different countries and provides insights that the high levels of polyphenols in the grape skin could be responsible for much of the controversial health benefits when used in moderation,” lead author Professor Tim Spector said.
Read the full study in Gastroenterology.