Wine And The Coronavirus

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wine and the coronavirus
wine and the coronavirus

Is There Still A Place For Wine During A Pandemic?

Today the World Health Organization formally announced that we are in a pandemic. With news like that, all sorts of topics leap to mind, but wine probably isn’t one of them. Wine and the coronavirus don’t typically come up in the same sentence, but I’m thinking that perhaps they should. And before I go any further, let me be clear that this blog post is NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE OF ANY KIND! This virus is no joke. We should all be listening to the experts (and we all know who those are, and who are most certainly not), and doing the right things. That means following all the advice that is not in the scope of this blog post to provide. This is simply a bit of a ramble about our changing dietary habits and risk of contagion. Is there, perhaps, a connection between what we eat, and drink, like wine, and the coronavirus?

Old Ways

Fermented foods used to be a big part of our diet. They prevented spoilage, and lasted through the winter. We drank alcohol because it was safer than water in many cases. The good news is that today our food and water are safer than ever. The downside is that today’s diets might be a bit sterile, affecting our immune system. There’s a mountain of research and evidence showing that fermented foods and beverages play a positive role in gut health. A healthy gut promotes a strong immune system. There is also a body of research showing that resveratrol in red wine does have immune-boosting properties.

Natasha Haskey, co-author of Gut Microbiota: Interactive Effects On Nutrition And Health, says that “The immune system is in place to fight infection. If you take a probiotic that acts on the wrong type of cell and suppresses the immune system, it can do more harm than good.” She suggests getting probiotics from food instead of taking a supplement. The evidence is strong that a diet rich in probiotics (as opposed to probiotic supplements) is key to a strong immune system. And wine does have probiotic properties.

Wine And Health

So, is wine a part of a healthy lifestyle? Maybe, in moderation. Is there a correlation between wine and the coronavirus? Sadly, no. The point is, wine is a natural product that has a place in our culture and society for lots of reasons, including, in part, health. So do leafy green vegetables, fiber-rich foods and fermented foods. These and other foods used to be a bigger part our diets than they are now, and maybe that has something to do with our immune systems, and maybe that has something to do with our susceptibility to viruses like covid-19. Again, this is not meant to be anything remotely authoritative; it’s simply some musings on where we are today. Let’s all be safe, and take care of each other! Drop me a line here with your thoughts and comments.

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