Yearly, hundreds of stories are circulated around the nation about college students drinking. Researchers are finding that these college students are actually smarter than first thought; drinking is actually good for the brain! So, break out that holiday juice and celebrate this Fourth of July for your health and intelligence.
When I was in college, my Japanese professor insisted that her best studying nights were done with a bottle of sake in one hand and her textbook in the other hand. I have to admit, I thought that she was just a little too ‘fond’ of her alcoholic drinks at that time. Researchers are coming out with new information that her theory, along with many other college students, may just not be that far off from the truth.
In the April 18th issue of Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, studies are showing that Champagne may actually protect the brain from injuries that are inflicted upon the body during strokes and other diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. For years, researchers have been instituting research on red wines such as cabernet sauvignon however champagne studies are just beginning to start a new trend for health awareness.
Researchers at the University of Reading in England and the Universita degli Studi di Cagliari in Monserrato, Italy have found that drinking Champagne in moderate amounts can actually help one’s health. The bubbles that are contained in most sparkling wines, such as champagne, contain high amounts of polyphenols. For those of you that are unaware, polyphenols are actually antioxidants. According to the National Cancer Institute, antioxidants are usually found in foods that most vegetables and fruits such as tomatoes, spinach and so on. Researchers found that sparkling wines also prevent cell death related to oxidative stress.
These champagne researchers actually used extracts from certain “blanc de blanc” and “pinot noir” champagnes on mice. The mice (although I do not agree with animal testing) were treated with these extracts to treat neuron cells. The scientists then simulated a stroke by exposing the mice cells to a reactive compound formed in the brain during inflammatory conditions. What they found was astonishing! Neurotoxicity was shielded against by just the champagne extract protection pretreatment. Unlike normal cases, brain-cell function was completely restored over time.
Although this research on champagne is still a little premature, scientists and liquor stores around the world are hoping for the best results. It is too early then to tell if champagne will actually be beneficial to brain aging, however the research in the mice at this time are very promising. For now, I believe I will sit back and drink a glass of champagne to do a little research myself and hope to regenerate a few brain cells myself. So, if anyone asks how many drinks you have had this holiday, remark that your brain is in training. so it does not matter how many have gone down. Always remember to drink responsibility.