At the beginning of each New Year, most people make resolutions. In 2020, I want to focus on my health. My husband and I are expecting our first child in June! So, there is extra attention being paid to what goes into by body these days. I recently read that health and weight loss are by far the most popular New Year’s resolutions, so if you made this resolution too, you’re in good company.
Now is the time to work out more and eat less sugar. I am also on a mission to limit the preservatives in my diet. While I’ve faithfully been doing Pilates and trying to skip dessert (not easy when you’re 5 months pregnant!), I do need to brush-up on preservatives in order to succeed.
While some preservative laden foods are easy to spot (fast food cheeseburger), others are sneaky! They hide in so much of what we eat and drink. Preservatives are in the protein bar you eat on the way to the gym, and they are even in your favorite wine. Avoiding the big offenders is not hard with a little preparation, but boy do those less obvious preservatives add up.
Giving up wine is something I would never consider except for when growing a baby, as I believe wine is part of the overall health and wellness of my body and my spirit! I truly enjoy wine, and want to drink it without worry or physical setbacks.
Let me unpack this. Almost all wine contains sulfite preservatives. More than 2,000 years ago, the Romans were the first to add sulfites to wine as a preservative. Ever since, sulfites have been used in the wine making process. Sulfites ensure a longer shelf life and prevent oxidation, which affects a wine’s color and taste. When a bottle of wine finally arrives in your home or neighborhood restaurant, the added sulfites help guarantee that the bottle is fresh and tastes the way the winemaker intended. Sounds great, right?
Personally, added sulfite preservatives in wine give me nasal congestion and an itchy throat. I talked to my doctor and it turns out I have a mild sulfite allergy. If you notice similar symptoms, especially when drinking sweet white wines that contain the highest levels of sulfites, talk to your physician.
In an effort to limit preservatives (including sulfites), every little bit helps! Your best bet is to consume foods and beverages that are as close to their natural state as possible. Look for fresh foods and foods that are grown and processed organically. Avoid items that are pre-packaged and over-processed. And when purchasing frozen or packaged items, look for those labeled “natural.” While the USDA doesn’t have a very strict definition of the “natural” labeling, these products are typically free of any artificial additives, dyes, or flavors.
What about wine? There is a lot of buzz about organic wine these days. More wines are being labeled “made from organically grown grapes” instead of labeled “organically produced wine.” This is because wine classified as organic in the US must not contain any added sulfites. In recent years, wine producers have focused on raising organic grapes, but most still add sulfites to ensure a longer shelf-life and prevent oxidation.
To solve this, I like to have some Wands in my purse or on in the pantry. The Wand selectively absorbs the sulfite preservatives in wine just before I drink it. This way my wine still looks and tastes fresh, but I am not consuming unnecessary preservatives. Order some here today