NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — For years, we’ve been told that drinking wine could be beneficial to our health, but now a new study shows which type of wine you drink could make all the difference, CBS 2’s Kristine Johnson reports.

Women have been told that limiting alcohol could lower their risk of breast cancer. But now, new research shows that drinking red wine in moderation may actually help lower a woman’s chances of the disease.

Researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center looked at 36 younger women who drank eight ounces of cabernet sauvignon or chardonnay daily for almost a month and then switched to the other type of wine  for a month.

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They say they saw a difference in the women who drank red wine.

“In red wine, the hormone levels, the estrogen levels decreased while the testosterone levels increased,” said Dr. Chrisandra Shufelt, the study’s author.”And that may actually be a change for risk factors for breast cancer.”

Shufelt says that’s encouraging because the change in hormone patterns suggests red wine may prevent
the growth of cancer cells.

She says they didn’t see the same protective effects with white wine, but that doesn’t mean white wine ups the
cancer risk.

“Red wine has red grapes, the red seed and that’s been found to have phytochemicals that would shift the estrogen levels
to be lower,” said Shufelt. “Where as  white wine did not.”

Experts say more research is needed to confirm this small study and just how safe and effective red wine is in reducing cancer risk remains to be seen.

These new findings challenge much of the current research on alcohol and breast cancer. One study late last year that found women had a 15 percent increased risk of breast cancer if they drank more three drinks a week.

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