Is Wine Fattening?

If you like to kick back with a glass of wine (or two) on the weekend, you may wonder if the alcohol is impeding your health and weight loss goals. In this article, learn more about the calories in wine, how it compares with other alcohol, and if drinking too much wine can lead to unwanted weight gain.

Wine Nutrition Vs. Other Alcohol
Wine does have some redeeming benefits — especially red wine because it contains the heart-healthy antioxidant resveratrol. However, alcohol is also calorically dense, at 7 calories per gram. (For reference, protein and carbohydrates have 4 calories per gram, and fat has 9 calories per gram.)

Most wines have about 100-125 calories per 5-ounces, with sweet wines having the highest and prosecco or dry sparkling wines being the lowest. This is slightly more than other alcohols — one 1.5-ounce shot of vodka has 97 calories — but lower than others, as some beers can contain up to 300 calories. However, wine is very easy to drink more than 5 ounces of — most people pour much more than this at home.

Can Wine Cause Weight Gain?
Drinking too much wine — or any alcohol — can cause you to overconsume calories, leading to weight gain. Alcohol is high in empty calories and can cause inflammation in the body, which leads to increased fat storage.

When you consume alcohol, your body will focus on using and eliminating it before any carbohydrates or fat are used for energy. This means that any food you consume during or after drinking may be stored as fat. Plus, many people consume unhealthy foods when they drink in excess, which can also contribute to weight gain.

The Bottom Line
Drinking wine moderately is generally fine for health, but consuming any alcohol in excess will lead to weight gain — and potentially other health problems, like liver disease or even cancer.

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