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Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Red Wine Work Together for Your Heart

A study published July 27, 2011 in Food Research International suggests that consuming omega-3's and red wine together could increase the heart health benefits of omega-3's.

Researchers at the University of Milan tested the effect of red wine polyphenols on the oxidation of omega-3 fatty acids. Specifically, they examined archidonic acid (AA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docohexaenoic acids (DHA); fatty acids that have been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects.

They found that the red wine polyphenols protected the fatty acids in human plasma from breaking down in the body. A greater effect was observed on the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA than on the omega-6 fatty acid AA.

The researchers believe that the protective effect of red wine polyphenols on omega-3 fatty acids explains the link between red wine consumption and lower fatalities from cardiovascular disease. They concluded that drinking red wine in moderation (up to 10 oz daily) while taking omega-3 fatty acids may help protect against cardiovascular disease.

Red wine has also been linked with weight loss and possible extension of life expectancy. Red wine polyphenols can also be found in grapes and other fruits. Be careful not to drink more than 10 oz a day, as the negative effects of drinking will outweigh the benefits.

Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to have numerous health benefits, including warding off age-related cognitive decline, reducing the risk of age-related vision loss, and preventing heart failure. These essential nutrients can be found in darker fish (such as salmon or tuna), or can be obtained from a high quality supplement.

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