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This 108-Year-Old Lady Owes Her Longevity to Champagne

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By Jaden Francis - - 5 Mins Read
Dorothy celebrating her 108th year birthday with her caregiver, both holding up glasses of champagne
Dorothy celebrates her birthday with caregiver (Bupa UK) |

If you want to live past 100, forget about maintaining a healthy diet and spending endless hours on the treadmill. At least, according to the staff at Southlands Care Home in Harrogate, England, the secret to one resident's remarkable health lies in Champagne.


Dorothy Flowers, a resident at Southlands who recently celebrated her 108th birthday, attributes her exceptionally long life to her fondness for Champagne and her love of horse racing. She is a regular presence at the reception desk, enjoying the company of others. She has her drawer there, which is always stocked with chocolate buttons, a favorite treat.


Helene Ballinger, the resident manager at Southlands, stated that Champagne is likely the true secret to Dorothy's longevity. It is the only beverage they ever see her finishing a glass of. On her birthday, Dorothy received an incredible 654 cards from around the world and, of course, multiple bottles of Champagne.


"Dorothy loves company, so she'll sit with us at the reception desk daily. She's such a regular that she's got her drawer, which we keep full of chocolate buttons," Helene Ballinger said.


"Her real secret for longevity, though, has to be Champagne. It's the only thing we ever see her finish a glass of," Ballinger added.

Dorathy celebrating her 108-year birthday with a birthday cake and holding up a glass of champagne
Dorothy celebrating her 108th birthday (Bupa UK/FB)


So, it seems that when it comes to being a woman's best friend, forget about diamonds—bubbles, in the form of Champagne, hold that distinction.


Link Between Alcohol and Long Life


Recent research indicates that light and moderate drinking can have health benefits. A study conducted on a large group of nearly 90,000 men in the United States revealed that those who consumed alcohol in moderation, ranging from one drink per week to one drink per day, experienced a decreased risk of total mortality, particularly heart disease.


The findings suggest that moderate alcohol consumption may play a role in reducing the overall risk of death, particularly in terms of cardiovascular health. However, it is essential to note that the effects of alcohol can vary depending on various factors such as individual health conditions, genetics, and lifestyle choices.


As with any health-related advice, it is crucial to consult with healthcare professionals and consider individual circumstances before deciding about alcohol consumption. 


Here are some health benefits of champagne for the body:


  • It improves memory: Scientists from the University of Reading in the UK conducted an experiment where rats were given Champagne daily for six weeks and then tested their maze-solving abilities. Surprisingly, the rats performed better in the maze than those not given Champagne. The rats' success rate increased from 50 percent to 70 percent after consuming Champagne. Jeremy Spencer, the head researcher, expressed excitement over the findings, noting that moderate Champagne consumption can positively impact cognitive functioning, specifically memory. The experiment has not been replicated on humans yet. Still, the researchers concluded that compounds in the red grapes used to make Champagne, such as Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, could enhance memory and spatial awareness. They suggested that consuming "one to three glasses a week" may help delay the onset of degenerative brain disorders like dementia.


  • It's good for the heart: While the benefits of red wine for heart health are well-known, Champagne, primarily made from red grapes, offers similar advantages. A study discovered that Champagne contains powerful polyphenols, antioxidants commonly found in red grapes (albeit in lesser amounts in white grapes). These polyphenols have the potential to lower blood pressure and prevent cardiovascular issues. Jeremy Spencer, a researcher advocating for the consumption of Champagne, suggests that two glasses per day can be beneficial. He claims that Champagne can positively impact blood vessel walls, potentially reducing the risk of strokes and heart disease.


  • It improves the skin: According to dermatologist Marina Peredo, Champagne offers detoxifying effects due to its antioxidant content. Additionally, tartaric acid in Champagne can contribute to skin lightening and help achieve a more even skin tone. Furthermore, the antibacterial properties of Champagne can be beneficial for individuals with oily skin, potentially assisting in managing breakouts.


  • It contains fewer calories than wine: Choosing Champagne over wine or beer in moderation can be a diet-friendly option. A small flute of brut Champagne contains around 80 to 100 calories, fewer than wine or beer. The Champagne bubbles slow consumption and create a feeling of fullness, potentially saving calories throughout the evening.