The Wine Diet Paperback – 8 Jan 2009
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This book is about nutrition and lifestyle rather than simple lard loss...Corder's advice is grounded in hard facts and perfectly sensible (Sunday TIMES)
This has to be a winner by virtue of its title alone (The BOOKSELLER)
Quite possibly the most useful wine book published this year (Decanter)
Two of the most interesting health and diet titles on offer are from newcomers to the genre and the most enticing of all is Professor Roger Corder's THE WINE DIET ('A fascinating and absorbing read…Corder's book takes the subject to new levels’)
* How to incorporate red wine, chocolate, nuts and berries into your diet for a longer and healthier life and sustainable weight loss...See all Product description
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My lifestyle choices and agreement with the author's opinion apart, this book contains an interesting blend of popular science writing and nutrition advice including recipes, all informed by the author's own research into the effects that one group of chemicals found in red wine and fruit has on the lining of our blood vessels and hence on the health of our heart and circulation. It is also backed up by a very comprehensive list of references.
The short message is that oligomeric procyanidins (and not the more widely known resveratrol) are the likely cause of the "French paradox," namely the unusually long life expectancy of people in Southern France and other places where a Mediterranean lifestyle is cultivated (Sardinia is the place to be, apparently, if you want to live to 100!). These polyphenols are present in certain red wines (especially in those produced following more traditional procedures), as well as in fruit and berries including cranberries, pomegranate, and raspberries. As these molecules have an adstringent effect as well, modern food processing methods tend to do what they can to remove or destroy them.
The author is very eloquent at explaining what - according to recent research from his lab and others - is good for us, and manages to debunk some "voodoo science" along the way, including the excessive cult of antioxidants. Very interesting read - obviously even more satisfactory if you happen to like the kind of food he recommends.
His book is especially relevant for the prevention and treatment of the many modern chronic diseases with a strong endothelial dysfunction component of the vessels, like coronary heart disease, diabetes etc.
Corder recommends in particular the traditional Madiran wines in South-West France, which contain high amounts of polyphenols. These polyphenols powerfully stimulate the natural vasodilator Nitric Oxide (NO), essential for vascular health. There is also very sensible advise on other 'Food for Health' topics based on sound scientific research, like the dark chocolate and (unprocessed) cacao powder drink recommendation.
He has worthwhile things to say about longevity, but the claim that the people in the Madiran region have the best longevity record in France, because of their red wine consumption, is dubious as longevity is influenced by many different factors.
Furthermore, his opinion on the super polyphenol resveratrol is not completely up-to-date. Although resveratrol levels in general are very low in most red wines, this is not always true especially in the some Pinot Noir and Muscadine wines. More importantly new research has made clear that resveratrol cooperates with other polyphenols (e.g. quercetine) and is being metabolized to various active substances, resulting in health effects at lower levels than previously thought.
Nevertheless, this is a really good book with lots of practical advise and supported by an extensive list of research literature.
As a public physician in the prevention of chronic disease, I have no hesitation in recommending this book.
Lots of good info in this book, although I imagine the kind of person who buys this is probably eating properly anyway.
One slight dissonance though - the wines reviewed are certainly not those drunk by the long-lived folk of Crete, Sardinia and Southwest France. They're getting the benefit from their local vintage rather than from fairly expensive bottled estate wines.
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Not, its about the mediterrenean diet which includes wine with food!
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