By: Dayna Copeland Schaef
For many, wine is imbedded in their culture throughout history as an important element of a nourishing meal – present at every social gathering, used to celebrate, to mourn, in the company of others, or in solitude. Some even believe that drinking spirits with a meal aids in proper digestion. So what type of wine is best for your health?
It is a sad fact that viticulture, or the growing of grapes for the production of wine, has long been known as one of the leading employers of pesticide use in the United States and all over the planet. Grapes can be a very finicky fruit to grow, easily affected by the slightest change in temperature, moisture and sun exposure, which is why so many vintners utilize the protection of chemicals to ensure that the wines that they make from their harvest will be palatable. Thankfully, in recent years, organic farming practices have begun to reduce the negative effects of what was once such a pollutant laden fruit.
Viticulturists in the U.S., as well as France, Italy, Spain and New Zealand are going one step further by using new techniques to reduce their impact on the environment, and to produce wines that are better for their consumers.
Biodynamic agriculture is a form of farming that has been on the rise in all areas of agriculture, in recent years. Not only does biodynamics encompass all the practices of organic farming, but it also places a priority on being in synch with the natural flow of the universe. The lunar calendar, for instance, is just one of the many earth cycles that biodynamic viticulturists pay close attention to for its effects on their grapes. Much like the practice of Ayurveda, biodynamic farmers strive to have as little impact on their environment as possible, which allows them to yield a product that is as close to nature as one can get.
In addition to being better for the planet, biodynamic wine is better for your health, too. Many studies show that these wines, grown without pesticides, following the cycle of the moon, the sun and the stars are more pure and nutrient dense, making that glass of merlot an asset to a well balanced diet and a healthy, long life. So, cheers to your health!