Stay Young by Drinking 50 Bottles of Wine a Day

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I’m constantly astounded by the number and variety of pills and miracle cures on the market. The ads for prescription drugs are bad enough—you know, your restless leg syndrome may subside, but the “side effects may include heart failure, erections that last four hours, eternal damnation, and blah, blah, blah.” And the products that have no FDA approval whatsoever? Who knows what you’re getting. In yesterday’s “Parade” pull-out of the newspaper, an ad for one such product caught my eye: Vinotrol.

Or is it Vinitrol? The company’s website spells it one way, then the other, alongside other misspellings and obvious grammatical mistakes. That’s hardly the only reason to be dubious about the “anti-aging pill” Vinotrol. Each pill contains the equivalent of 278 five-ounce glasses of pinot noir’s worth of resveratrol, a naturally occurring substance found in red wine that … well, no one’s quite sure what it does. The Vinotrol ad is filled with phrases like “it is thought” and “may have.” Nothing has been proved, and, in the little fine print at the bottom of the Vinotrol ad is the note that neither the product nor the statements made in the ad have been evaluated by the FDA. But if you “Call Today!” Vinotrol can be yours for a 30-day trial, and thereafter for something like $45 a month.

Call me crazy, but I’d rather spend the money on resveratrol in a form that I can enjoy, and maybe even catch a little buzz off of. Over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal had a full page’s worth of info about good, inexpensive wine—the “joy of jug wine” and budget wine selections from merchants around the country. Most bottles mentioned are under $10. They may even make you feel young for a little while. The morning after, however, you might feel older than ever.