Wines made in south western France and Sardinia are better for your health than Australian, South African or US wines, scientists say.

According to research conducted by Queen Mary University, London, and the University of Glasgow, tannic wines from the Nuoro province in Sardinia and the Gers in south west France give the best protection against blood vessel damage.

The experiments pitted wines from across the world against each other in order to find which had the best potential to produce the antioxidant polyphenols called polymeric procyanidins.

Procyanidins are known for their ability to stem the clogging of blood vessels and protect blood vessel cells.

The Nuovo province and the Gers obtained the best results, Nature magazine, a UK science journal reported.

The two old world provinces lead the field. Wines from the US, Sardinia as a whole, South Africa, the EU (France, Greece, Italy or Spain) and Australia followed in that order.

This appears to directly contradict a UK cardiologist’s findings, as reported on decanter.com in 2003, that Chilean Cabernet Sauvingon had the most beneficial antioxidant effects.

Dr William McCrea of the Great Western hospital in Swindon asked for wine producers to help back a national study into the phenomenon after recommending two glasses of Montes Cabernet Sauvignon reserve 2001 a day to his cardiac patients.

According to UK newspaper the Times, a daily dose of two small glasses of Madiran – a wine from Gascony in southwestern France made mainly from the black grape Tannat – would provide enough procyanidins to lower blood pressure.

See also:

UK heart doctor calls on wineries to back research

Written by Oliver Styles