Women, Wine, Weight, News and Commerce
"CHEERS LADIES—A DRINK A DAY MAY KEEP THE WEIGHT AWAY"—ABC News
"MODERATE DRINKERS GAINED LESS WEIGHT THAN ABSTAINERS—Boston.com
"RED WINE LESSONS OBESITY RISK IN WOMEN—Oneindia
STUDY: WOMEN WHO DRINK MODERATELY TEND TO GAIN LESS WEIGHT IN MIDDLE AGE—LA Times
WOMEN WHO DRINK MORE GAIN LESS WEIGHT—Washington Post
A DRINK A DAY COULD HELP KEEP THE POUNDS AWAY—The Globe & Mail
MODERATE DRINKING MAY CURB POUNDS ON WOMEN—Boston Herald
Three hundred and fifty seven links showed up this morning when I did a News search on Google for "Women-Alcohol-Weight". By the time the day is over, this post will likely be one of a couple thousand that all are commenting on a new study that shows women who drink moderate amounts of alcohol (red wine in particular) gain less weight in middle age.
Forgive me for generalizing about the sexes, but in my experience when you start to suggest to women that a specific thing will help keep the weight off, they are likely to respond—and a hell of a lot quicker than men respond. Add to this to a specific action that is as easy to do and enjoyable as drinking wine and women will REALLY respond.
That's why this new study on alcohol and weight consumption is going to have a measurable effect on wine sales over the long term.
What's interesting and VERY IMPORTANT to note about these studies is that the "How" and "Why" is no where to be found. WHY do women who consume moderate amounts of alcohol gain less weight in middle age than those that don't consume alcohol or consume more than moderate amounts? HOW does this conversion of wine drinking to keeping the pounds off actually work?
The answers to these questions, while important, are not important to the commercial impact of the announcement of this study on correlations.
As you might imagine, as a public relations professional, I'm pretty interested in how news stimulates action. Does there have to be an explanation of HOW drinking red wine will reduce the amount of weight gain in women in order for women to take action upon hearing this? No. There does not. In this case I'm pretty sure that all that needs to be done is note the correlation between the two in order to see women alter their alcohol consumption habits.
But what if drinking red wine has NO direct connection between keeping weight off in women? What if women who happen to drink wine moderately in middle age also tend, as a group, to do a number of other things—like exercise, eating healthy, have less stress—that more directly affect weight gain? Would this information make the reaction to this bit of news more muted. You bet it would.
So in this case, where the wine industry is concerned, less information is better I suspect.