#170 – Episode 170 – The Clean Wine Con


Chip and Veronica explore the different ways we rationalize our drinking, particularly the emergence of clean wine as a wellness product.

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about this episode

I noticed on my Facebook feed advertisements about “clean wine” and wine that doesn’t give hangovers. I thought that trend was weird and problematic but didn’t dig into it.

But when I saw a wellness expert recommending wine as a healthy decision you can make, I had to speak up.

What makes wine unhealthy is barely about the pesticides they used to grow the grapes, that’s the least of it.

Wine is bad for us because of its alcohol content.

The alcoholic content is made up of ethanol. By definition, ethanol is a colourless volatile flammable liquid that is produced by the natural fermentation of sugars.

Colourless, volatile, flammable liquid. The thing that is in 98% of U.S gasoline.

Wine and alcohol have been with us for thousands of years and we’ve found ways to dress it up and make it sophisticated and dress it down so it’s an accessible party beverage for teens.

There are whole industries dedicated to making the process of drinking glamourous. From the exclusive venues where only the most expensive wines are served, to the ageing process, to the ambience and experience of serving it with the sommeliers and crystal wine glasses.

It has carved a space for itself on every special occasion in our lives.

We’ve seen the true cost of drinking countless times, and we show up on this podcast every week to help the people who’ve experienced the costs to create better lives for themselves.

But in most other circles, we’re looked at like the fun police. Going after people’s beer and wine hits at their cultural identity. It’s that deeply entrenched in society.

“Why don’t you get a life. Have some fun. Don’t be so uptight.”

Alcohol has been around for generations and it and fun are so tightly connected that speaking out against it creates a sort of tribal response (which is possibly the reason these health experts and publications feel the need, or the pressure, to include alcohol versus excluding it).

And hey, we’re not saying alcohol needs to be banned.

We tried prohibition in America a few decades ago and it doesn’t work. But similar to how the realities of smoking have been exposed and we get warning labels, we need to have a true reconning of the perceived benefits and the true costs of putting this flammable substance into our system.

That’s what we’re talking about in this week’s episode. This clean wine con job that is being perpetuated. We’re also talking about medically assisted recovery, the pros and cons of using a drug like naltrexone to regulate your drinking, and much more.

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