Skip to main content

wine and diabetes

We resume the count up to 101 healthy reasons to drink wine, to launch the second edition of Age Gets Better with Wine due out August 17 from the Wine Appreciation Guild.
60. Resveratrol from wine has insulin-like effects, according to a study from Taiwan. In a study of diabetic lab rats, they found that resveratrol was effective at lowering blood sugar and fats such as triglycerides. Further, it delayed the onset of insulin resistance, a hallmark of type 2 diabetes.
61. Resveratrol slows memory loss associated with diabetes, at least in lab rats. The infamous maze test of memory was used, with better retention among the rats given resveratrol.
62. Another manifestation of diabetes is called peripheral neuropathy, in which the nerves lose function. This results in loss of sensation and other problems. Resveratrol appears to offer some protection against diabetic neuropathy, at least in a lab model. (Like the actions listed above, this has not been tested or proven in humans using resveratrol supplements.)
63. One of the most serious complications of diabetes is stiffening of the arteries, leading to imparied circulation. Resveratrol, in a lab experiment, helped maintain supple arteries in diabetic animal subjects.
64. Perhaps most serious of all the conditions related to diabetes is loss of contractile function of heart muscle cells. Of course the reason I bring this up is because, again in a lab animal model, resveratrol slows this weakening of the heart.


Popular posts from this blog

Wear red and DRINK red for women’s heart health

This Friday Feb 2nd is the annual “wear red” day in Canada and the U.S. to raise awareness for women’s heart health. Why only a day for the number one threat to women’s health? Women are 5 times more likely to succumb to heart disease than breast cancer, which gets a whole month (October.) Another contradiction is that the advice women hear about prevention of breast cancer is the opposite of what you can do to lower the risk of heart disease: a daily glass of wine. Even one drink a day raises your risk of breast cancer, we are told, ignoring the overriding benefits of wine on heart health. Drink red wine to live longer Here’s why I think women should also “drink red.” For starters, wine helps de-stress and celebrates life. Stress is a factor in heart disease, and if that were the only way wine helped it would be worth considering. But the medical evidence is also strong: a daily glass of red wine helps raise the HDL “good cholesterol” levels, which lowers the risk of cardiovascular p…

Which types of wine are the healthiest?

I am often asked after lecturing on the healthful properties of wine which type is best to drink. Since much of the discussion has to do with the polyphenol antioxidants from the skins and seeds of the grape, red wine is the first criterion since it is fermented with the whole grape rather than the pressed juice. This allows for extraction and concentration of these compounds, familiar ones being resveratrol and tannins. But beyond that, which varietals have the highest concentrations?

According to the Roman philosopher Pliny the Elder, “The best kind of wine is that which is pleasant to him that drinks it” but modern science expects more specifics. (The point of course is that if you have a wine that you enjoy you are more likely to drink regularly and therefore reap the benefits.) But there are several difficulties in singling out certain wines for their healthful properties. Which compounds to measure? Are we talking about heart health or the whole gamut? Is it the varietal of the …

The J-curve is dead. Long live the J-curve!

There is a resurgence of debate about the validity of the J-curve, especially as it relates to alcohol and cancer. A 2014 report determined that “alcohol use was positively associated with overall mortality, alcohol-related cancers, and violent death and injuries, but marginally to CVD/CHD” (cardiovascular disease). In other words, there was little benefit if any in terms of heart disease but a big upside risk for cancer and accidental or violent demise. Gone was the French Paradox! The J curve is dead! Or not. Though that statement may be technically true, I looked at look at the data myself and found something different: a strong confirmation of the J-curve for overall mortality, overall cancer deaths, cardiovascular disease, and all “other causes.” This held for both men and women:
    Used under creative commons license from Ferrari P, Licaj I,Muller DC, et al. Lifetime alcohol use and overall and cause-specific mortality in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and nu…