Wine was considered a medicine
Dionysius, the god of wine, is also a healer. Since Antiquity, people have attributed medicinal properties to wine: a “hot” and “living” drink because it results from fermentation, a liquid associated with blood – the source of strength and life. Wine is seen to have the powers of a vital fluid, capable of regenerating the body in times of weakness and sickness.
Thus, in the wine-producing canton of Valais, wine held a role as a health-giving product until the 1950-60s. It is used for several empirically-designed remedies aimed at helping chills, coughs and colds; rheumatism and arthritis; weakness and in particular, women giving birth. The custom of offering wine to women who have given birth is recorded back to 1528. A document in the archives mentions that a demi-pot of red wine (about 7 decilitres) is offered to a woman after she gives birth.
Source: Histoire de la Vigne et du Vin en Valais, «La coupoe et le vin de l’accouchée», Samuel Pont, ethnologist.