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Is red wine really good for the heart?

Doctors have been saying for some time now that red wine is good for your heart – but some recent news has raised some questions.

Dr. Manny Alvarez, senior managing health editor of FoxNews.com, recently received this question from a viewer:

“I heard there was some recent news about the heart-health benefits of wine. What’s the deal?”

Alvarez said it’s true – one of the top researchers of the health benefits of red wine was recently fired from the University of Connecticut for allegedly fabricating data, which was later published in many medical journals.
        
The researcher was studying the effects of resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant found in red wine believed to have heart-healthy benefits, such as:

           - reducing bad cholesterol

           - protecting the lining of blood vessels

           - lowering the risk of inflammation and clotting

           - and even preventing diabetes and obesity, which are both strong risk factors for heart disease

Alvarez spoke with Dr. Nieca Goldberg, medical director of the Joan H. Tisch Center for Women’s Health in New York City.

“All I can say . . .you don’t have to start drinking to prevent heart disease,” Goldberg said. “What you need to do, is find ways that you can get antioxidants in your diet. Blueberries and pomegranate have resveratrol contained within the fruit. And that's one way to get it without any alcohol content. Another way is to go to the market, and try to pick out fruits and vegetables that are colorful. Improve your diet to have red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables because they have other antioxidants, and all antioxidants help to improve the flexibility of the blood vessels and reduce the risk of plaque buildup.”

If you have a question for Dr. Manny, email him at DrManny@foxnews.com.