I have always thought that it was no accident that, when all else fails, the one ‘food’ that two of the most allergic people that I know (Micki Rose and Anna Locatelli) can always tolerate – and the one ‘food’ that revives me if I have had too close an encounter with some electro magnetic radiation is – red wine. Organic preferably, a fine wine, even better – but the essential is that it be red, and that it be wine.
‘It’s the alcohol’, our more sceptical friends maintain – ‘amazing what it can do for you…’ – but I have always believed that the secret was the wine’s constituents, in particular, resveratrol (also to be found in dark chocolate – see Anna Locatelli).
So I felt a nice thrill of righteousness when I found, buried in the bottom of my in-box, an email from John Lang of Good Wine on Line with reference to a scare which obviously hit the headlines earlier this month about wine drinking being a cause of cancer. To reassure our readers he directed me to an article by ‘physician and wine-maker’ Dr Philip Norrie (who has an impressive string of letters after his name) explaining why wine was both different from other alcoholic beverages – and far better for you! Since Dr Norrie not only had a string of letters after his name, but quotes no less than 28 references to support his theories, I thought I should share his thoughts with you – so click here to read his paper. If I had needed convincing, which I didn’t, I would have been convinced…
As a post script, our diabetic webmaster threw in the fact that red wine always brings his blood sugars right down – and the more of it he drinks, the better for his blood sugars, although, possibly, the worse, the following morning, for his head….
Three weeks later…..
How depressing – although if it genuinely could deliver benefit, I suppose it is a positive move…. A team a Columbia University in NY have been working on resveratrol to try to isolate the elements which appear to offer such protection again cancer and a range of other diseases. According to a report in the New Scientist:
Plants make a huge variety of chemicals, called polyphenols, from resveratrol to protect themselves against invaders, particularly fungi. But they only make tiny amounts of each chemical, making it extremely difficult for scientists to isolate and utilise them. The unstable nature of resveratrol has also hindered attempts at building new compounds from the chemical itself.
However, the Columbia team think they have found a way by building polyphenols from compounds which are very similar to resveratrol but sufficiently different to be much easier to work with. The question is, will it work – or is it the synergistic effect of the resvertrol with all the other compounds in red wine that actually does the trick?
For the technical stuff, click here.