Is Wine Healthy?

How healthy is it to drink wine? We hear from nutrition experts that there are chemicals in wine that help us to stay healthy. And so, nutritional guidelines will often advise us that a glass or two of wine a day can be healthy. Of course, there are glasses and there are glasses. And so my answer to that would be to use a glass that can fit the contents of a whole bottle of wine in the glass. Hey! It's a glass.

But there's an interesting study that was done back in 2002 and is published here. It was a large study, which is significant because the larger the study the more we can trust its results. It involved 3.5 million transactions where either wine or beer was purchased. That's huge.

So, what was the study? Basically, the researchers studied the grocery store receipts of wine drinkers and beer drinkers involving 3.5 million transactions from 98 different grocery stores of two major Danish supermarkets over a six month period. That's a lot of food and wine. But what's interesting about the study is the researchers found that wine drinkers bought healthier foods than did beer drinkers. Wine drinkers bought things like olives, fruits and vegetables more often than beer drinkers did. On the other hand, beer drinkers tended to buy more sugar, cold cuts, chips, butter, margarine, sausages, pork and soft drinks than wine drinkers did.

In other words, wine drinkers have healthier diets. So, given that knowledge, we have to ask ourselves if it's the wine that causes wine drinkers to have fewer heart attacks and some cancers or is it the person's diet that does it? The problem of course is, we can't really know. But what we can surmise is that studies showing beneficial effects of wine have probably been confounded by the fact that wine drinkers are more healthy eaters too.

It's something to think about.

I'm not opposed to wine myself. I drink it although I don't drink it too often nor do I drink too much of it when I do. It's always in a social situation too. My primary reason for not drinking too much of it or drinking it too often is that I've found it affects my prostate. After going whole food, plant-based for a few months, I found that my prostate had shrunk and I no longer needed the prostate medications that I was taking. That helped me to get off of all prescription medications.

But then, there was a period where I started having wine every night for several weeks (or maybe a month). And pretty soon, I started having prostate issues again, even though I was still eating whole food, plant-based. Finally, one night I felt sure that I was going to have to go back to taking my prescriptions for the prostate again. At the time, I didn't even think about the wine. I was just bemoaning the fact that it seemed things had gone backwards.

One morning though I suddenly woke up and realized that it could be the wine. So, I stopped drinking it, and my prostate issues cleared up again. I never did have to go back on the medications for it. So, for me, I've determined that alcohol is somewhat of a detriment to my prostate's health. So, I'm back limiting myself as far as how much wine, beer or otherwise that I might drink.

I'm not advocating that anybody give up the wine if they enjoy a glass or two at night. But I am suggesting that some health problems may be due to the wine, just as my prostate issues were. And we can't know for sure if wine is really good for us or not.

This is one area where I think moderation is good. So, cheers. Have a glass of wine and enjoy your olives, vegetables and fruits. And no offense intended to the beer drinkers out there. If you're a beer drinker and you're reading my blog postings, then you're probably not in the group that buys the unhealthy foods. So, cheers to you too and enjoy the healthy foods that you eat as well.