Researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have discovered that wine is particularly good for your health if you drink it with food. It has previously not been quite understood why wine is good for you. Wine, in particular red wine, contains polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants that can counteract cancer and heart disease. But why that is so has been a mystery since little of the antioxidants find their way into the bloodstream.
The researchers, led by Dr Joseph Kanner, have discovered that the secret may be in the stomach. When you eat fat food, e.g. red meat, harmful oxidising toxins are released, in particular one called malondialdehyde (MDA). MDA is thought to contribute to various diseases, such as arteriosclerosis, cancer, diabetes and others. Dr Kanner’s research has shown that if you drink wine at the same time as you eat this “bad” food (a juicy steak perhaps) the amount of MDA released is much reduced compared to if you don’t drink any wine with the food. Fruit after dinner has a similar effect. So it is in the stomach rather than in the blood that the wine does its good work. At least according to the experiments done on mice. As reported in The Economist.