Joins Ranks of Heart-Friendly Drinks
Like red wine, sherry contains antioxidants called polyphenols that
help control cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of coronary artery
disease, claims a study by researchers at the University of Seville
"Sherry is widely consumed, especially in Spain and the U.K., and
we have shown that its moderate intake decreased total cholesterol and
increased HDL cholesterol," researcher Juan M. Guerrero says in
a prepared statement.
The polyphenols in sherry prevent the oxidation of bad low-density lipoprotein
(LDL) cholesterol and can also increase production of high-density lipoprotein
(HDL) cholesterol. HDL cholesterol is associated with longevity and
decreased incidence of coronary artery disease.
The Spanish researchers gave rats sherry each day for more than two
months. The daily amount given to each rat was the equivalent of a 150
milliliter serving consumed by a 70-kilogram human adult.
The sherry didn't affect the rats' weights and had no significant impact
on any of their other metabolic processes. But the rats showed a decrease
in LDL cholesterol and an increase in HDL cholesterol.
"As a general rule, moderate consumption of red wine exerts beneficial
effects for health. In our research, the beneficial effects of red wine
can be extended to sherry wines," Guerrero says.
The study appears in the current issue of the Journal of the Science
of Food and Agriculture.