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Properties of tannins for health

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Tannins present in wine

The tannins they are substances that, for many, are somewhat unknown, but that are present in a wide variety of foods, drinks and infusions, which we consume daily. It is a very characteristic compound, because at the time of its intake, it produces a feeling of roughness, dryness and bitterness.

In general, tannins for health are very beneficial, thanks to the properties they possess. But, at the same time, its consumption in excess, can cause various discomforts in the body.

It is prudent to know the properties of tannin for health and its contraindications, as well as the foods that contain this substance, to achieve a responsible and healthy consumption.

What are tannins?

Tannin molecule

This compound comes from polyphenol, a chemical that is in plants, bark, seeds, leaves, and the skins of fruits. Tannins are usually found in red wine, where they are obtained in 2 ways.

One, is through the grape, through its skin, seeds and scrapes. The varieties that contain this substance the most are the cabernet sauvignonthe tempranillo and the nebbiolo.

It is also possible to obtain this compound, from wood. For these cases, the tannins dissolve in the wine, when the barricades are stored in the cellars. In addition to red wine, these substances are found in coffee, tea, nuts, dark chocolate, quince, apples, among others.

Properties of tannins

Often, the media disseminate scientific studies, which highlight the benefits that the intake of wine in moderate quantities brings to the body. This is, in large part, thanks to tannins.

It is that they are phenolic compounds that have astringent and anti-inflammatory properties, making it a great ally, to combat diarrhea or gastroenteritis. In addition, this substance has antioxidant action, which protects cells against free radicals and reduces the risk of regenerative diseases.

It is advisable not to abuse this compound, since, in excessive amounts, it can reduce the absorption of nutrients such as iron or proteins, causing an absence of these, which can lead to problems for the body.

Health Benefits of Tannins

Tannins and their health benefits are multiple.  The intake of foods and drinks rich in this compound, can bring many advantages to your body, as long as they are not abused.

Firstly, the advantages of tannins for health, is its antioxidant action, which cares for and protects the immune system, as well as cellular care and the regulation of metabolism.

In turn, the appropriate doses of this substance will prevent degenerative and inflammatory processes from occurring, caused by free radicals.

Specialists recommend small amounts of this substance, to achieve these antioxidant effects in the body. Tannins for health also have antiseptic properties, so it helps the body heal its wounds faster. In addition, it is a great ally to fight different bacteria that can appear on the skin.

On the other hand, the astringent action of this compound favors a correct digestion, reducing stomach problems and diarrhea.

In turn, the anti-inflammatory property, is another advantage of tannins for health, because it has a favorable impact on pain and inflammation in the veins. In this way, it is a good solution for some vascular problems, such as varicose veins or hemorrhoids.

Also, tannins, provide a heart-healthy effect on the body, helping to take care of the heart and, in addition, prevent high cholesterol levels.

Finally, they have a great energetic action, thus allowing to counteract both muscular and mental fatigue.

In short, there are really many health benefits of tannins and when consumed at appropriate levels, it will benefit the body and mind.

Foods that contain it

This substance is present in various foods and beverages for everyday consumption. In this sense, you probably ingest tyou aninos every day and you didn’t know it.

Undoubtedly, the best known is wine, since the substance is present in all types of reds that are made and marketed in the world.

Additionally, tannins are part of the composition of some fruits, such as apples and, of course, grapes. This compound is also present in quince, strawberries, blueberries and cherry trees.

In turn, we can find this substance, in 2 recognized infusions that we drink daily: tea and coffee.

Also, dark chocolate is another of the recognized foods, in which we can find this substance in its elaboration.

Allergy to tannins

The rejection of tannins can manifest itself in several ways, especially when drinking red wine. For this reason, it is vital to pay attention to the reaction of our body after the intake of this popular drink.

In this sense, having difficulties in breathing when we drink wine, can be the first symptom that we are allergic to this substance. On the other hand, having severe headaches, when we ingest a small amount of food or drinks with this substance, is another clear sign that the body has rejection of tannins.

Finally, in the most severe cases, having rashes in different parts of the body is another indication that there is a negative reaction to this substance.

Contraindications and side effects

Consuming tannins in excess will surely bring complications for the body, so you have to be very careful at the time of intake. In turn, if we suffer from some diseases or discomfort, it is key to take into account, which can complicate or aggravate our state.

First of all, the abundance of this substance can produce deficiencies in regards to proteins important for the body.

On the other hand, being an anti-nutrient with astringent properties, in cases of constipation, its consumption should be limited until this problem no longer occurs. In turn, if we have gastritis, it is not recommended at all, to ingest food and drinks with tannins.

In addition, under no circumstances should iron supplements be mixed together with tannin-rich supplements, as it can reduce the absorption of iron and other important minerals, such as calcium.

In conclusion, tannins are substances that can be a great ally to have a healthy organism. But, at the same time, it is important to be prudent with consumption, to avoid these complications.


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About Andrew Parkinson

Andrew Parkinson is a highly accomplished pharmacist with a passion for improving healthcare. With a wealth of experience in both community and clinical pharmacy settings, he's known for his dedication to patient well-being. Mr. Parkinson actively engages in medication management, offering personalized solutions and promoting better health outcomes. He has also played a pivotal role in educating patients on proper medication usage and potential interactions. Andrew's commitment to advancing the field of pharmacy and ensuring safe and effective drug therapies has garnered him recognition as a trusted and invaluable healthcare professional, making a positive impact on countless lives.

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