Cheers to Your Health

      Most people I know imbibe in some sort of alcohol whether it's beer, mixed drinks, wine, or bubbles. I personally enjoy some wine or tequila a couple times a week. With the holidays just passing, this could have been written a little sooner but, this is also a time when people are making resolutions and focusing on a better version of themselves.

     I wouldn’t be surprised if you’re at all confused when it comes to alcohol: is it good for you (think red wine & antioxidants) or not (think toxins & hangovers)??…. Well, truth be- still confusingly- told, both are actually accurate—- it’s like the old saying goes, everything in moderation. That being said, there are some things to consider when choosing your fermented libations, where you could be making better choices for your body and thereby allowing yourself to fully savor every last drop. 

     Around six years ago my friends and I began drinking more tequila, we had grown a little tired of the generic drinks and didn’t really know what to order when we were out. It’s a little embarrassing, to say the least as an adult, to be asked by the waiter/bartender what we would like and responding with "hmmmm.....ummm, I'm not sure yet, can you give me a few more minutes". I personally didn't really enjoy whiskey and being that my ancestors are from Spain who then migrated to Mexico, makes it even more suitable or at least convincing that I would enjoy tequila more. The best part is, what I have come to later find out, that tequila is actually the lowest glycemic alcohol choice. Meaning it doesn't raise your blood sugar levels like most other alcohols and it may actually lower your glucose (or blood sugar) levels due to the sugars naturally found in the agave plant called agavins (not to be confused with agave syrup) that you don’t actually ingest. 

There’s this study by the American Chemical Society shows that when mice are given a standard diet and then given water with agavins added, they ended up eating less overall and had lower blood sugar levels compared to those mice who hadn't consumed agavins. What’s even more interesting is that the mice given the agavins also produced a hormone called GLP-1, which keeps the stomach full longer and produces insulin, leading researchers to believe that agavins could be beneficial for people with type 2 diabetes or weight loss issues (2014, American Chemical Society). https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/pressroom/newsreleases/2014/march/tequila-plant-is-possible-sweetener-for-diabetics-helps-reduce-blood-sugar-weight.html

     While I'm NOT advocating to go all out on a bender with some tequila if you have Type 2 Diabetes, this could be a great new finding that can help you feel better when mixing a couple tequila drinks with soda and lime or even Kombucha! So, larga vida tequila (long, live tequila), in moderation of course, and less Del Taco or Taco Bell!!! 

     On our quest to be more conscious of what we put in our bodies we discovered some vineyards in Oregon that dry farmed their grapes. This means that the vineyards do not actually irrigate the grapevines; the taproots rely on annual rainfall and also go FAR down into the earth in search of water. Not only is this practice from way back European style, but its more sustainable for the planet. These wines had a more complex tastes, more minerality and were all around more unique and interesting, at least to me! Come to find there's a wide range of what they call “NATURAL WINES” and they are predominatly European due to their strict regulations on what can be added in or sprayed on the grapes. Heather did some research and found all the disgusting things that a lot vintners add in to their wines after its grown to achieve "that taste customers want” and that’s in addition to the quality of the grapes that they are growing from the get go. (Think: spraying them with of pesticides or using chemmy fertilizers. No bueno!) So there could be mold, added sugars, pesticides, glysophate, sulfites, additives, heck, sawdust (for real), the list goes on. These NATURAL wines are made from usually dry farmed and/or sustainably grown organic or biodynamic grapes. They are strictly tested to contain no mold/Mycotoxin, no added sugars, no sulfites, they're usually small batch and contain only wild native yeasts to the grapes. Its the NOT the sulfites but the sugar and additives that are a killer the next morning. So if you're tired of waking up hungover and dehydrated the next day after enjoying your favorite bottle of wine then look no further and keep your eyes peeled for bottles in the wine store with “Natural" wines that are “Biodynamic” &/or "Organically grown". 

For more information please check out Chris Kresser’s review on what's in your wine: https://chriskresser.com/all-about-wine-part-1-the-evolution-of-winemaking/

AND

Dry Farm Wines: a company who sources these types of wines and ships them to you door! (please note: We are not sponsored by Dry Farm Wines, we just love what they are doing and want to spread the word) https://www.dryfarmwines.com

                          Larga vida tequila! (long live t___ !) & sustainable, natural wines,

                                             Travis