Good news for you red wine lovers: New research shows that a few glasses a day may lower your blood pressure significantly. And now for the bad news: It only works with non-alcoholic wine.

The study found that three glasses a day over four weeks led to a significant drop in blood pressure in men who had heart disease risk factors.  Over that same period, men who had three glasses of red wine (with alcohol) or three ounces of gin saw no change in their blood pressure. High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

Although both red wine and non-alcoholic red wine contain polyphenols, an antioxidant that decreases blood pressure, the researchers say that the alcohol weakens the polyphenols’ ability to lower blood pressure.

The researchers said nonalcoholic red wine may lower risk of heart disease by 14 percent and stroke by as much as 20 percent, based on their study results.

Many studies have suggested alcohol, especially red wine, may be associated with lower heart disease risk for some people. The American Heart Association does not recommend drinking alcohol for potential health benefits.


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Photography: red wine splash