The French Paradox
Back in 1991, 60 minutes aired a segment that was later called the French Paradox. The reporter observed that the French have a relatively low incidence of coronary heart disease despite having a diet that is rich in saturated fats. When compared to Americans, the French eat four times as much butter, and 60 percent more cheese. Yet the rate of heart disease among adult French males is 23% lower than that of their American counterparts. According to the report, aside from their consumption of saturated fats, there is something else that the French were consuming that may have helped to lower their rate of heart disease, red wine. When the 60 Minutes report aired Americans took note. Almost overnight we went from being a nation of white wine drinkers to red wine drinkers. Consumption of red wine shot up 44% and some wineries actually lobbied for the right to label their products as health food.