British Columbia

Jason Dyck, University of Alberta researcher, reveals truth behind wine study

A University of Alberta researcher is coming out with the truth behind a viral story about wine as a replacement for the gym.

Researcher confirms not everything you read on the Internet is true

Contrary to what's on your Facebook feed, a glass of wine is not the equivalent of an hour at the gym (Ron Wilson)

A University of Alberta researcher is coming out with the truth behind a viral story about wine as a replacement for the gym.

A popular UK website recently published a story with the headline, "A glass of red wine is the equivalent to an hour at the gym, says new study" with the sub-headline "New research reveals skipping the gym in favour of the pub is ok."

"No, sadly that's not the case, although I think many people want to believe that," said Jason Dyck, the lead author of the study the article was based on and the director of the Cardiovascular Research Centre at the University of Alberta.

Dyck's study was published more than two years ago. It examined whether resveratrol, a compound found in grapes and other foods, can increase exercise capacity for those already exercising. 

"We didn't use any red wine in our study nor did we recommend not going to the gym," said Dyck.

The study did conclude that resveratrol could help maximize exercise benefits for people with restricted exercise capacity, like heart failure patients.

"Certainly there is a kernel of truth in there," said Dyck. "Maybe they just need a headline that catches people's attention for them to read the study."

To be effective, the compound would need to be used like a performance-enhancing supplement, with concentrations far beyond a glass of wine.

"To get the same amount that we're giving patients or rodents you'd have to drink anywhere from 100 to a thousand bottles a day," said Dyck.

This isn't the first time Dyck has come across this kind of sensational headline for the study. He saw similar interpretations when it was first published.

"A lot of times when you work away in your lab you hope that people read your studies and that it makes an impact," said Dyck. 

"When you see all your hard work distilled down to one phrase that isn't correct it's a little disheartening."

To listen to the full interview, click on the audio labelled: Is drinking wine as good as working out? Uh, no.


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