The other day as I was pouring myself a second glass of wine and I wondered "how much wine do French women drink?
In Bordeaux back in the 1980s, I was introduced to the reputed oldest man in the Médoc. When asked the secret to his longevity, this spirited 98-year-old-who had spent his entire life tending vineyards-replied, "I drink a glass of wine every day, bien sûr." But what about the so-called essence of life, water? Without hesitation, he answered, "Water is for ducks."
This encounter was memorable because my father used the same French cliché—water is for ducks—and he also drank a glass of wine each day with his lunch. So did most people I knew growing up in France.
Today, French women have one of the longest life expectancies in the world. And by 1991, we knew why. It's called the "French Paradox."