A couple months back, I was on the phone with my old college roomie (aka my partner-in-wine) when she mentioned that she wasn’t drinking wine as much anymore because of all the calories. My heart skipped a beat as I wondered why she would say such a hurtful thing. #blasphemy
I mean, what had wine ever done to her, but bring her comfort in her time of need, great conversations, endless laughs…countless memories. SMH…these stupid calories had her talking all sorts of crazy. I’m telling you calories are a girl’s worst enemy.
I won’t front…for a second I started to contemplate my own wine intake. You see at the time, I was probably drinking a glass almost every other day, but the devil is a lie. I get it…the “get it right/keep it tight” struggle is SO real in these streets, but if there’s any calorie worth consuming, it’s definitely from wine. In fact, if I could only have one source of carbs for the rest of my life, I’d gladly stuff my face full of fermented grapes. #justsayin
So, you can understand why I couldn’t let my friend (or any other girl for that matter) worry about wine calories. I know summer is practically here and many girls are on the grind to get bikini ready. No worries! I did a little winework and discovered some tips on how to stay summertime fine and still drink wine. College roomie, this one’s for you!!
First things first, I think it’s important to understand the amount of calories in wine. Depending on the wine, one glass of wine can range between 110 – 300 calories. So, if you think about it, a glass of wine is equivalent to a bag of chips or a scoop of ice cream.
The range has to do with alcohol content, sweetness of the wine and serving size. Alcohol is the primary source of calories in wine. It has almost two times the amount of carbs as sugar. Wines normally contain 9-19 grams of carbs per serving.
You should know that alcohol affects the calories in wine more than sugar. So, a slightly sweet wine with low alcohol wine will actually have fewer calories than a dry high alcohol wine.
Here’s a chart that breaks down the calories in different wines:
So, now that you have a better understanding of wine calories, here are some drinking tips to help you maintain your sexy this summer and all year long.
MODERATION IS KEY
Now that we have the wine calorie chart above, you can do a better job of monitoring how much wine you consume. An average pour at a restaurant is five- to six-ounces (it may be a little bit more when you’re at home lol); if you’re counting calories, it’s important to keep this in mind, that way you can adjust how much you order accordingly. Don’t be afraid to ask what size pour you’re being served. Maybe instead of ordering a full glass of wine at happy hour, order a three-ounce pour instead. Boom, that’s half the calories. OR, if you’re at home don’t fill the glass to the rim (no judgment, life is hard). You can still drink wine, just in moderation.
PAY ATTENTION TO ALCOHOL CONTENT
If you get one thing from this post, make sure it’s that wines with a higher alcohol content have more calories than wines with a lower alcohol content. Many think that a glass of white wine has more calories than a glass of red wine because it often contains more sugar, but there really isn’t much difference between the two. It’s the alcohol, not the sugar that is the primary source of calories in wine.
A gram of alcohol has 7 calories compared to a gram of carbohydrate (sugar), which has 4 calories.
The basic formula used to calculate the calories in wine is as follows:
% of Alcohol X Ounces X 1.6 = Calorie Content
So a six-ounce 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. So, don’t get caught up on the color of your wine. Instead, pay attention to the alcohol content and you can cut out some calories by choosing a wine with less alcohol.
MAKE A WINE SPRITZER
If you’re a white wine lover, you can easily cut down on the calories you’re drinking by pouring half of your glass with wine and filling it the rest of the way with club soda. Club soda has zero calories, so you can basically enjoy two wine cocktails for the same number of calories in one glass of wine. If you’re just out for a casual happy hour and ordering the house white, this is an easy way to watch your calories while still enjoying the taste of wine.
LOW CALORIE WINE
Low-calorie wines have a lighter alcohol content, which can be achieved by harvesting grapes a few weeks earlier than normal. Experts say they are at least 15 percent lighter than the standard 120-130 calories found in a typical five-ounce serving. Low-calorie wine brands include, Brancott Estate’s Flight Song, Treasury Wine Estates’ The Skinny Vine, and reality TV star Bethenny Frankel’s Skinnygirl line. The verdict is still out on whether low-calorie wines are here to stay. I’ll actually be reviewing Skinnygirl wine this Wednesday. So, stay tuned…
Moral of the Story: Wine calories can add up quickly and tend to be easier to ignore than food calories, but you don’t have to stop drinking wine in order to stay summertime fine. Choose your calories wisely and try one of these alternatives. I guarantee you that you can have your wine and sip it too!
Images: Devre White