Everyone experiences pain from time to time, even those who are considered to have otherwise glowing health. As a result, in an attempt to mitigate symptoms of pain, people routinely reach for all sorts of remedies.
While your mind might initially conjure up images of ibuprofen or other garden-variety painkillers, what if we told you that red wine is also an effective painkiller? And we’re not just talking about a nightly glass of pinot to calm the nerves after a long day at the office. Is there actual science behind red wine and pain relief? Let’s explore.
Is Red Wine a Legitimate Pain Relief Mechanism?
Anyone who regularly consumes wine will probably use their anecdotal experiences to verify that it is an effective stress and pain reliever, but is this a claim that is rooted in scientific reality? You might be surprised to hear that the answer to that question is, yes.
One might assume that it’s the intoxicating component of alcohol that makes wine an effective pain killer. In actuality? It all boils down to the grape. Did you know that the skin of grapes contains a compound called resveratrol? Resveratrol is said to have an analgesic effect that mimics other types of painkillers.
Given that grapes are present in the manufacturing of both red and white wine, shouldn’t both derivatives provide pain relief? Not necessarily, and here’s why: both red and white wine are fermented with grape skins, but the difference lies in the duration of that fermentation period. Simply put, the fermented grape skins in red wine are processed for a longer period, meaning that there are more benefits to be had when it comes to drinking red over white.
Pinot noir, in particular, has been found to have the highest levels of resveratrol out of any wine grape. Compared to its peers, Pinot Noir also has fewer calories and less sugar. Cabernet and Merlot come in as close seconds, considering both also have lower sugar content than other comparable wine varieties.
On top of resveratrol’s pain-relieving effects, we also know that alcohol tends to reduce anxiety which, if left untreated, can exacerbate pain. Pain relief isn’t the only benefit that occurs when consuming the compound. Resveratrol can also improve heart health due to its ability to lower both blood pressure and cholesterol. Certain studies have also shown that the compound can improve brain health and insulin sensitivity.
The Importance of Drinking Responsibly
Like any other painkiller or analgesic, it is important to always remember that you should regulate your consumption and “dose” accordingly. Imbibing too much in red wine, or any alcoholic beverage for that matter, can lead to a host of problems. If you want to ensure you’re using alcohol as a pain reliever responsibly and effectively, keep your consumption low. For women this means one glass of wine a day, and for men, two.
If you choose to drink more, especially in excess, you risk canceling out red wine’s benefits. At this point, the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption have been well documented and can include anything from increased pain and inflammation to addiction and peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage associated with the brain and spine).
Red Wine: Occasional Relief or Long-Term Solution?
Now that we’ve established what red wine can do, let’s talk about what it cannot do. Ultimately, like most painkillers, it can be dangerous to rely on red wine as a long-term relief method. While the occasional glass of pinot can serve as a beneficial treat, if you find yourself struggling with consistent pain, alcohol is only really effective as a masking agent. And when it comes to pain management, there’s a colossal difference between masking and treating. Masking only serves to temporarily alleviate pain symptoms, whereas actual treatment modalities can produce long-term relief and a “cure” for some ailments.
Point blank, if you’re seeking long-term relief, you’re not going to find it through alcohol use and consumption. Fortunately, there are other options available to you, and one of them is chiropractic care and adjustment.
Treating the Root Cause: Why Chiropractic Care Prevails Over Pain Killers
Chiropractic care can effectively help to treat and manage a wide range of conditions and symptoms. Moreover, using chiropractic care as a treatment tool can also help people avoid becoming dependent or addicted to painkillers. According to Kansas City’s Cleveland University, recent research has demonstrated that individuals who engaged in chiropractic care had a 64% lower chance of receiving an opioid prescription compared to non-chiropractic users.
To further illustrate this point, let’s say a doctor has prescribed you a legitimate prescription for opioids. Even if you take your opioids as prescribed, long-term use will result in physical dependence which can be dangerous if you’re not working closely with healthcare professionals. For those who experience chronic pain but also have a history of substance abuse issues, chiropractic care can be used instead of painkiller prescriptions and self-medicating practices like wine drinking.
Chiropractic care, whether implemented occasionally or routinely, has been shown to help symptoms associated with neck pain, headaches, whiplash, overuse injuries, work and sports-related injuries, arthritis, back pain, and finally, strains and sprains incurred because of daily activities. In essence, chiropractic adjustment is an effective tool for many suffering from chronic or acute pain.
The Verdict? Stay Vigilant and Regularly Monitor Your Symptoms
In summation, red wine, when used in moderation, can be an effective agent for relieving pain. It is always important to check in with your body and make sure your relief is not solely achieved because of pain masking. A little red wine here and there is okay, but if you’re looking for methods that have long-lasting relieving effects and won’t put you at risk of developing a physical and mental dependence on substances, give chiropractic care a try.
Red wine may have health benefits, including temporarily eliminating uncomfortable symptoms, but they often return with a vengeance. On the contrary, chiropractic care Cornelius NC is a long-term treatment method that is substantially less risky, especially when performed by a reputable professional.
At Lakeside Sports Chiropractic and Physical Therapy, Dr. Jennifer Lidstrom and her team of experts Cornelius Chiropractors are here to help answer all your questions. Please feel free to contact us today via phone at (704)-896-8446 or visit us at our new location:
11220 Treynorth Drive, Suite A
Cornelius, NC 28031
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