Latest scientific news 18 August 2023

Is moderate wine consumption related to a lower cardiovascular disease risk and mortality?

This meta-analysis examined the relationship between moderate wine consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality and found an inverse association. Researchers also wanted to know whether the results would vary based on factors like age, gender, and study duration.

The leading global cause of death is cardiovascular disease (CVD). The death rate from CVD is twice as high as other diseases such as cancer, infectious diseases or eating disorders. In addition, CVD is also the primary cause of illness and morbidity and thus, is reducing the individuals’ quality of life. Lifestyle changes, including moderate consumption of alcoholic beverages, can help lower CDV risk.

Both excessive drinking and abstinence are associated with a higher CVD risk.

Moderate wine consumption seems to have a protective effect on coronary heart disease due to the effect on the “good” HDL cholesterol, preventing the clotting of the arteries (artherosclerosis) as well as the beneficial action of the polyphenols.

To explore the connection between wine consumption and heart health, researchers carried out a systematic review and meta-analysis. A total of 25 studies with more than 1,4 million participants from 11 countries were included in this analysis (the studies were conducted between 1985 and 2021 and the follow-up period ranged from 4 to 25 years).

Wine consumption with lower cardiovascular risk

The results showed that there was an inverse relationship between the consumption of wine and the risk of CVD, coronary heart disease and cardiovascular mortality. Factors like age, gender, and study duration didn’t seem to affect these results The current findings confirm the existing data that moderate wine consumption can be inversely associated with cardiovascular outcomes such as cardiovascular mortality, CVD and coronary heart disease.

Compared to those who didn’t drink wine, wine drinkers had. Indeed, compared to non-drinkers, wine consumers had:

  • A 24% lower relative risk of coronary heart disease
  • A 17% lower relative risk of cardiovascular disease (i.e., heart attack, stroke)
  • A 27% lower relative risk to die of cardiovascular disease.

The authors explain that wine seems to have a stronger beneficial effect on CVD than other alcoholic beverages. An explanation for this inverse relationship between wine and cardiovascular disease might be:

  1. the phenolic compounds in wine, which reduce the “bad” LDL cholesterol, the thrombosis risk, the blood lipids.
  2. its alcohol components, which reduce thrombosis risk and fibrinogen levels and induce collagen and platelet aggregation.

However, it is important to note that the study only compared wine consumers to non-consumers and did not consider different alcoholic beverages, drinking patterns and amounts consumed. The researchers caution against increasing wine consumption, especially for individuals vulnerable to alcohol due to age, medication or medical conditions. They conclude that the dietary recommendation of the Mediterranean diet include wine consumption and considering the findings of their meta-analysis, it would be interesting to suggest moderate wine consumption as part of other dietary recommendations.

ReferenceIs moderate wine consumption related to a lower cardiovascular disease risk and mortality?


Lucerón-Lucas-Torres M, Saz-Lara A, Díez-Fernández A, Martínez-García I, Martínez-Vizcaíno V, Cavero-Redondo I, Álvarez-Bueno C. Association between Wine Consumption with Cardiovascular Disease and Cardiovascular Mortality: A Systematic Review a, nd Meta-Analysis. Nutrients. 2023 Jun 17;15(12):2785. doi: 10.3390/nu15122785.