In recent years, wine has been lauded for everything from a boost in heart health to overall lifespan. Conversely, a growing sober-curious movement has evolved as people reconsider the effects of alcohol consumption on their health.
Can wine make you gain weight? Wine can make you gain weight. If you’re drinking large quantities of wine and consuming more calories than you’re burning, that can lead to weight gain.
Wine calories are also considered empty calories. That means that while wine isn’t the most high-calorie beverage out there, the calories you are consuming aren’t adding much nutritional value from essential vitamins and minerals.
What is the difference between red wine and white wine? The primary difference between red wine and white wine is how the skins are used in the winemaking process. White wine can be made from white grapes or red grapes, but the skins on the grapes are removed during fermentation.
In red wine, the skins are kept on the grapes, giving the wine that red hue. Red wine also uses darker grapes than white. As far as the calories in red vs. white, you’ll find that they’re pretty similar.
Calories In Different Wine Varieties, Ranked
Red and white wine are fairly similar in their calorie count, with some white wines a bit lighter on the calories.
Usually, red wine has between 120-125 calories per 5 ounce glass. Fans of Italian sparkling wines will be happy to learn that prosecco has fewer calories than many other glasses of wine.
Let’s take a look at the average number of calories in a few popular wine styles:
- Rosé: 125
- Chardonnay: 123
- Cabernet sauvignon: 122
- Pinot noir: 121
- Sauvignon blanc: 119
- Prosecco: 98
How many calories are in a 750mL bottle of wine? A 750mL bottle of wine has an average of 600-625 calories. Generally, a bottle of white wine will have fewer calories than a bottle of red wine.
There are about 5 glasses of wine in a 750mL bottle of wine. Calorie count does vary a bit by the bottle, but not much. Here are a few average calorie counts by type of wine:
- Rosé: 625 calories
- Bottle of red: 610 calories
- Bottle of white: 600 calories
How many calories are in an 8 oz glass of white wine? There are about 194 calories in an 8 oz glass of white wine. Red wines will have slightly more calories on average than white wines. However, the CDC counts a glass of wine as 5 oz.
If you’re looking to cut back on your alcohol consumption while still enjoying a Sonoma-approved white wine, an 8 oz glass of Surely’s non-alcoholic sparkling white wine is only 40 calories.
To put things in perspective, one single ounce of most wines has about 25 calories.
Weight Loss and Alcohol Consumption
Limiting alcohol consumption has long been linked to weight loss.
For the calorie counters out there, reducing empty calories from alcohol means you have more calories available for healthy foods and beverages. That can be reason enough not to drink, but there are other health benefits to limiting your alcohol consumption as well.
Alcohol consumption can leave you feeling sluggish and bloated, potentially causing you to skip workouts. Too much wine can also lead to overeating due to lowered inhibitions. These choices to skip workouts and overindulge can lead to weight gain.
Now that you have an idea of wine calorie counts, you may be wondering about your favorite brand. The formula for calculating calories in wine is:
alcohol by volume (ABV) x ounces x 1.8
Keep this formula handy, as it’s rare to see any nutrition facts on a wine label.
How much wine should I have?
Wine consumption isn’t just about the calories, either. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) doesn’t differentiate between wine and other types of alcohol when making recommendations on alcohol consumption.
Their latest dietary guidelines define moderation as 2 alcoholic drinks per day for adult men and no more than 1 alcoholic drink per day for adult women.
They also note that drinking less is always better than drinking more and that pregnant women should abstain from alcohol altogether. In terms of weight loss and overall health, the USDA highlights drinking beverages with less sugar. Watch out for sweetened wines with added sugars!
Wine’s Sugar & Carb Dilemma
Even with the lowest calorie options, most wine involves sugar. Through the process of wine fermentation, natural sugars from the grapes are converted into alcohol.
Generally, the sweeter the wine, the higher the sugar content. A sweet dessert wine or sweet wines like riesling will pack a higher sugar punch than a dry wine that makes your lips pucker.
The average glass of wine also has about 4 grams of carbohydrates, or residual sugars. Dry white wines like Sauvignon blanc are lower-carb, with only about 2 grams of carbs in a 5 oz serving size.
If you’re looking to limit both sugars and carbs, that can be hard to do while still drinking wine.
Alcohol-removed wines from Surely are low in sugar, with no added sugars to make our wines sweeter. They’re delicious just the way they are and great for those worried about their daily sugar intake. (Plus, they’re kinder to the liver since the alcohol has been removed.)
Other Health Concerns from Wine
Light wine drinking, particularly red wine drinking, has been linked to some positive effects.
Wine’s effects on heart health may include improved cardiovascular health thanks to the resveratrol in grape skins and red wine. Resveratrol has been shown to improve vascular function and lower blood pressure in some studies.
That said, your doctor likely won’t be prescribing a wine habit to cure what ails you. As an alcoholic beverage, drinking too much wine can have added health consequences.
The downsides of drinking can include alcohol dependence, liver problems, and a higher risk of problematic behaviors associated with excessive alcohol consumption. Wines with a high alcohol content should be moderated even more closely.
What type of wine has the lowest alcohol content? The types of wine with the lowest alcohol content include sparkling, white and sweet wines. There are also alcohol-removed brands of wine now on the market.
Wines with a higher alcohol content are usually dry red wines like shiraz, syrah, zinfandel, and merlot. Fortified wines like port are also higher in alcohol.
Lower alcohol wines are typically sweeter, like a moscato, but that also usually means a higher sugar content. A brut Champagne or dry white wines like pinot grigio fall somewhere in the middle of the ABV and sugar content scale.
Perhaps you’re watching your alcoholic beverages altogether for your health. In this case, you may want to consider low-alcohol or alcohol removed wines as an alternative.
The Bottom Line On Wine And Calories
To sum up, a standard 5 oz glass of wine has about 123 calories. That can add up over time! Not to brag, but we have only 25 calories in a 5 oz pour here at Surely.
If you aren’t loving how wine is affecting your workouts or your waistline, you’re not alone. Some people prefer wine with lower alcohol content or even alcohol-removed wine based on their individual needs or health goals.
If you’re looking to limit your drinking to lose weight or take better care of your physical health, make the switch to Surely for all of the flavor, far fewer calories, and none of the alcohol.
- Alcohol Consumption and Obesity: An Update
- Make Every Bite Count With the Dietary Guidelines
- Alcohol and cardiovascular health: the dose makes the poison…or the remedy
- Resveratrol and Vascular Function
- Binge Drinking's Effects on the Body
- Relationships between nutrition, alcohol use, and liver disease