Wine + Vitamin Absorption: What You Need To Know
Recently we’ve been seeing a lot of articles popup on the internet about alcohol’s affect on vitamin absorption (usually about wine and women, which, well, makes sense for no other reason that we love both) so we decided to dig a bit deeper.
Partially because we were curious (er, worried!).
Partially because we see far too much fear-mongering being thrown at women and wanted to get to the facts.
So what’s the deal when it comes to wine and vitamin deficiencies?
First of all: there’s nothing special about wine. It’s about all alcohol, in any form. Wine’s just more likely to be a woman’s drink of choice. #FearmongeringAtItsFinest
Secondly, the short answer is yes, even moderate alcohol consumption can make it more difficult for your body to absorb vitamin D and vitamin B12, both of which are essential and both of which women are more apt to have deficiencies in.
But the emphasis here is on CAN.
According to most researchers, it would take more than the occasional glass of adult grape juice to make you vitamin deficient. In fact, most researchers talk about alcoholics or heavy drinkers when discussing the connection between alcohol and vitamin deficiencies.
How does wine affect vitamin absorption, you ask (or, well, we did anyway!)?
Well, three ways actually:
- Relying on alcohol to meet your caloric needs is likely to prevent you from eating a balanced diet (duh).
- Alcohol can damage the lining of your intestinal tract, which is where your body absorbs nutrients from the foods you eat, preventing you from properly absorbing the nutrients in the food you eat.
- Some vitamins (vitamin D included!) need to be broken down in the liver but, well, if your liver is taxed breaking down alcohol it can’t get to the vitamin D breakdown, preventing your from benefiting.
While the odds are that you have nothing to worry about, vitamin deficiencies are serious and not to be taken lightly.
If you’re deficient in Vitamin D, you can be at risk for bone issues (like bone fractures, soft bones, rickets, and osteomalacia) and poor muscle strength. You’re also likely to be at an increased risk for breast cancer risk. Low levels of vitamin D have also been associated with early age-related macular degeneration.
Deficient in Vitamin B12? You’re not only at increased risk for bone fractures, you’re also more likely to suffer from severe depression, memory loss, instability, disorientation, decreased reflexes, hearing loss, rapid heart rate, shortness of breath, dizziness, weakness, and fatigue.
Needless to say, you don’t want to be deficient!
Before you abstain from your resveratrol-rich glass of vino (yes, your wine has health and beauty benefits too), ask your doctor to check your Vitamin D and B12 levels at your next check up. And, in the meantime, do this to boost your Vitamin D levels all naturally.
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