Red Wine – Healthy or Not?

by updated 2012/12/16

Yesterday’s post got me thinking that so much media hype has been given to the possibility that drinking red wine may be good for you.  But I am not so sure it stands up to scrutiny.  First, the amount of red wine that you supposedly must drink to get the benefit of the magic compound, resveratrol, is large.  There are some very expensive resveratrol supplements for sale, but even if you could afford them, some people think the evidence for resveratrol benefits is skimpy, at best.  One of the biggest claims for this compound is that it may extend life expectancy.  Who knows?  Length of life, and especially length of healthy life, seems to me to be related more to overall diet and lifestyle and the luck of genetics than to any one specific magic potion.   I work with a man who is 72 or 73 years old, still doing very physical work with no trouble, appears very healthy, and show little sign of slowing down.  He is a Mormon and never drinks wine, but apparently picked his parents well.

My relationship with red wine is a bit unusual and completely unrelated to any thought that it might be good for me.  I often have a glass, sometimes two, with or before dinner.  I only like red wine, not white.  I also only like it from late fall through late spring.  I totally lose my taste for it during the months from about late April through mid-October.  During those months I will often have a beer instead.  In the time from October to April I will almost never drink a beer.  Odd isn’t it?  It may be related to temperature, but I don’t think so.  Even during a cold September or May period, I don’t desire red wine.  And even if we have a warm spell later in October or April, I won’t feel like a beer.  I think it may be more related to day length.

Then there is the whole problem of finding the red wine that you like best.  I am lucky that I like most, but still am sometimes frustrated when trying to choose.  I may find a great red wine from a specific winery.  Then when I get it the next time it may be labeled the same, but be a different year variety and not be as good.  Also one Merlot may be great, another not so much so.  Plus, cost is not always a predictor of quality.  I usually buy what is on sale and buy 6 at a time for an additional discount.  It is as likely that these on sale wines may be as good, or as bad, as one that is twice the price.  On the other hand, I like some specific micro beers and they are consistent year to year.

Another issue is keeping red wine.  I usually will drink only a glass or two so a bottle will last more than a day.  Add in a day to the open bottle period where I might not drink a galss and sometimes 3 or 4 days pass from when I open the bottle until I drink the last of it.  Red wine never seems to taste as good to me after the first day it is opened and sometimes by the 3rd or 4th day, the taste has completely changed.  I have tried different ways of keeping it, but it does not seem to matter.  I know I could just drink the whole bottle when I open it, :-) but that’s not really my style or desire.  What do you red wine drinkers do?  Do you have tricks that get you good wine every time?  How do you keep, or do you even keep wine after it is opened?  And does anyone else lose their taste for wine during the longer days of the year?

Will Sig

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