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Professor Trevithick who carried out the research
"The Martinis have a lot more antioxidant capabilities"
 real 28k

Peter Durelli, head barman at The Savoy Hotel
"I find it hard to believe"
 real 28k

Friday, 17 December, 1999, 00:44 GMT
Martinis healthier 'shaken, not stirred'

Bond looks in good shape - because of the martinis?


James Bond's favourite drink is the healthy option, according to scientists who analysed its physical properties.

Strictly speaking, Bond should be of pensionable age, and the secret of his apparently ever-young appearance could be the larger numbers of antioxidants in his shaken, not stirred Martini.

Antioxidants are molecules thought to be able to "mop up" particles which can cause damage to the body's tissues.

Researchers tested the ability of both shaken and stirred Martinis, alongside their ingredients gin and vermouth, to deactivate toxic hydrogen peroxide.

The investigators, who reported their results in the British Medical Journal, found that Martini was more effective than gin or vermouth alone.

However, a Martini shaken vigorously for one minute in a medicine bottle beat the same drink merely stirred using a laboratory mixer.

So the secret of Bond's success, suggest the researchers, may be the "facile oxidation of reactive martini components".

Flaws

The team admitted they did not include the obligatory olive in their experiments.

However, a much greater flaw, unacknowledged in their study, is the use of gin rather than Bond's favoured vodka in the making of the cocktail.

Much of the antioxidant properties of alcoholic drinks are ascribed to the quantities of chemicals they contain called "polyphenols" .

However, when the team, from the University of Western Ontario, Canada, checked Martinis, both stirred and shaken, against other drinks such as white wine and whisky, they found that the levels of these chemicals were much higher in wine and whisky than in Martinis.

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See also:
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Portugal tops world drinking league
14 Apr 99 |  Health
A third of women 'outdrink their men'
14 Oct 99 |  Health
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25 Jun 99 |  Health
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20 Oct 99 |  Health
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