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Science suggests drinking wine could be good for your brain

Queen Elizabeth II with wine

There’s nothing quite like a remedial glass of wine after a long day – ideally paired with a spot of TV, some good food and maybe, just maybe, another human being.

Little did we know that this luxurious activity counts as an intellectual workout, and we have the science to prove it.

One expert (who has written a book on wine and the brain, no less) says that drinking a glass could actually be good for our minds, as the drink can make the brain’s grey matter work harder thanks to its complex tasting process – giving it more of a runaround than solving a maths problem.

A glass of vino is good for the brain, apparently

A glass of vino is good for the brain, apparently

In, fact, The Times reports, according to Dr Gordon Shepherd of the Yale School of Medicine, whether it’s red or white, supping on vino engages more parts of your brain than any other working activity .


Read more: Bottoms up: the unexpected health benefits of drinking prosecco


“The taste is not in the wine; the taste is created by the brain of the wine taster,” Shepherd says.

“The molecules in wine don't have taste or flavour, but when they stimulate our brains, the brain creates flavour the same way it creates colour.”

Bridget Jones drinking wine

In his book Neuroenology: How The Brain Creates The Taste of Wine, Dr Shepherd goes on to say that the act of sniffing then drinking a glass (or three) of wine stimulates the odour and taste receptors, thus exercising the muscles which control the tongue.

He added that the sensations experienced by drinking wine are “heavily dependent on our own memories and emotions and those of our companions."


Read more: Love it or hate it, scientists say Marmite could be seriously good for you


It even engages more of the brain than listening to music or even solving a maths problem.

So next time you find yourself vying for a smooth merlot or a dry pinot grigio, remember to savour it first. After all, it’s all in the name of brain training.

Images: Rex Features / iStock

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