Depending on the wine and it does not matter whether it is a red or a white or even a rose wine, the calories per glass of wine can vary considerably. The range has mostly to do with alcohol content, only a little bit with its inherent sweetness and of course the volume or serving size. A full-bodied Chardonnay from the New World could contain as many calories as a Shiraz with the same alcohol content.
Read on and find out how many calories your glass of wine contains. You will learn that a glass of wine can contain a lot more calories than you would think. Being aware of what you are drinking will help you avoid nasty surprises.
As we all know alcohol content varies with the wine and the year. Alcohol is nothing else but the product of sugars which have in time fermented from various fruits, in this case grapes. Sugars contain calories and they are transferred into the alcohol. The more sugars, the higher the alcohol percentage, the higher the calories. The strength of the alcohol is measured in ABV or alcohol by volume, where one volume is equal to 10 ml of pure alcohol. It takes an average adult around an hour to process this so that there’s none left in their bloodstream, although this varies from person to person.
Alcohol content is also expressed as a percentage of the whole drink. Look on a bottle of wine and you’ll see either a percentage, followed by the abbreviation “ABV” (alcohol by volume), or sometimes just the word “vol”. Wine that says “13 ABV” on its label contains 13% pure alcohol.
Every single grape berry contains sugar, even the grape varieties that are used to produce dry (not sweet) wines. The difference is how much of that sugar is allowed to survive the fermentation process. As the yeast carries out fermentation, it chows down on the grape sugars in order to produce alcohol (and a handful of additional by products). However, if a crafty winemaker comes in and interrupts the yeast’s feast, the yeast dies off and the sugar remains.
Wine may come in quantities of different volumes, such as 250 ml, 175 ml and 125 ml, but in public places is mostly served in a measure of 125 ml. This makes for about 6 glasses of wine for one bottle. Usually I pour 6 glasses of wine out of one bottle as do most of my friends and other people I know, which I therefore assume is the most common measure.
How does this translate into calories?
The basic formula used to calculate the calories in wine is as follows:
So a six-ounce (175 ml) glass of wine that has an ABV of 15% has about 144 calories compared to a six-ounce glass of wine that has an ABV of 12%, which has about 115 calories. As this has nothing to do with whether the wine is white or red, please don’t make calorie assumptions based on the colour of your wine. Instead, you should pay attention to the alcohol content and you can cut out some calories by choosing a wine with less alcohol.
Better understanding of calories.
Back to the most used volume of a 125 ml per glass. In a wine containing 13% alcohol, it would transfer to 90 calories (one cup of fat free milk) for one glass and for 11%, this would be 76 calories (one slice of wheat bread). This looks ok but wait until you combine it with some cheese.
Wine is often consumed at dinner time alongside a meal, but now you can calculate that a 250 ml glass of wine with 13% ABV will add some 180 calories to the calories you are eating. To make it better understandable, this equals consuming two table spoons of creamy peanut butter. Sharing a bottle of wine between two people might lead you to think you are drinking less calories, however, it could still mean that you are consuming 340 calories per person. To make the comparison with some common food again, this is about equal to one/fifth slice of pepperoni pizza.
The calories in various glasses of wine can range between 110-230. It makes you think, doesn’t it. It is a good thing to know what you are drinking and especially how healthy it is for your body. However, I am not a doctor and I certainly do not want to sound like one. I, for one, never thought about the impact of drinking wine on the body. Since I learned about calories in wine I am drinking it more consciously. After all, we would like to be drinking wine in good health and for a long time to come!
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