Dyin’ for a drink

The Cancer Council of Australia (CCA) recently freaked out wine and other alcohol drinkers when it released a paper saying that alcohol causes cancer. Sort of makes you feel sorry for all those people who have happily consumed wine over the last 10,000 years and who never heard of the CCA.

It seems that hardly a week goes by without the public being told by one authority or other that something enjoyable, useful or familiar is going to be the death of us.

Smoking, obesity, radon in the soil, pesticides in food, sunlight, atmospheric pollution, food additives, animal fats, pickles, fried food, cured and barbecued meats, nuclear power plant radiation, mobile phones, booze – the list is endless.

In the same news reports are stories about miracle solutions to all our ills. Cures for cancer that are always, unfortunately, “Expected to be available in five years.” We’re still waiting.

Not forgetting the wonder substance, resveratrol, found in red wine. Resveratrol, apparently, is an important factor in the famous “French Paradox” lifestyle and a possible cancer preventative.

Confusing, isn’t it? We’re told on one hand that the alcohol in red wine is going to cause cancer but on the other hand that resveratrol in the same wine is going to help prevent cancer (and cardio-vascular illness).

So what’s the answer? There isn’t one.

Apparently just being alive is slowly killing us.

How to proceed?

Try to ignore shock horror headlines. (The stress of reading them can cause high blood pressure.)

Get a sense of perspective. Eternity is infinite. The age of the universe is about 14 billion years. In comparison, average human life expectancy is around 80 years.

As we’re only here for such a short time, we might as well eat, drink and be merry while we can.

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