Friday, March 12, 2010

Red wine: A diet aid for women?

As a health and happiness blogger, not to mention a Middle-Age Sexy gal, I'm always on the lookout for stories that make me feel not-quite-so guilty about my guilty pleasures.

So, it was with great interest that I read about a study that indicates alcohol (and especially red wine) might not be as fattening for women as previously thought.

The 13-year study, reported recently in London's Daily Mail and other sources, was conducted on about 20,000 average-weight women ages 39 and older. Over time, most of them tended to put on weight, a standard side-effect of aging in women. However, surprisingly, it was the teetotalers -- those who drank things like water and soda instead of alcohol -- who gained the most pounds. And those who drank moderately (about a drink or glass of wine a day) gained the least!

Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston offered several theories for this phenomenon, including that females metabolize alcohol more efficiently than other types of carbs, or that women subconsciously tend to make up for the extra calories by eating less of other foods.

So, the old adage about avoiding alcohol (and its "empty" calories) when you're dieting might not be such good advice, after all!

Since the study found that red wine seemed to bring the most benefits -- with hard alcohol, beer, and white wine less effective -- it seems that indulging in a nightly glass of Pinot Noir or Merlot might help you whittle your waistline a little bit faster! (Not to mention reaping the other benefits of red wine that have made headlines in recent years, such as it helping your heart and your sex life!)

It sure as hell will make dieting a LOT more pleasant!



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