We linger lovingly over a candlelit glass with supper, we pop a cork to share with friends, and we fall head over heels for the romanticism of a dusty cellar stacked with vintage bottles. Wine is one of the pleasures of the universe. Red wine makes us warm and gummy, loose-tongued and relaxed. Chilled white is a wonder for a sunny day, and Rose reminds us of Provencal afternoons among the lavender in the sweet South of France.
We also know that too much will lead to heavy limbs and a hangover and that alcohol consumption is running rampant in society. So how do we get our pleasure without the pain? Here are a few tips for raising a glass to your good health…
Red Over White
If you are trying to be healthy when it comes to wine then you are best sticking to red. White wine is glorious, but red wine is really where it's at when it comes to all those beautiful antioxidants that help your heart beat healthy. Red wine is also better for silicon which actually improves your bone density.
Along with choosing red over white, if you want to find healthy ways to consume wine then you are best going dry over sweet. Pinot Noir hits the top spot as one of the healthiest wines thanks to its resveratrol level and low sugar levels. Next on the list, merlot and cabernet for when you want to mix it up a little.
If You Must
If red wine gives you a headache just thinking about it then you can switch to a glass of Rose now and then. Sure, it has lesser antioxidants in comparison to red but it is still better for you than drinking white in terms of the sugar count. For those willful white lovers then try and stick to Pinot Grigio. If you want to keep healthy then avoid sweet wines as they are weighed down with sugars.
Don’t Go Cheap
Cheap wine will make you feel nasty but it will also make you less mindful about consumption. If you spend just a little bit more on your wine then it will probably encourage you to savour it over a few days – reducing the likelihood of a blow out binge. Invest in a bottle stopper or vacuum pump so that after cracking your wine you aren’t obliged to polish off the bottle but can stash it safely without compromising the quality.
Pair with Food
Any alcohol on an empty stomach is bound to lead to trouble. Without food to soak up the booze, the alcohol travels straight to your bloodstream leading to faster intoxication and dehydration. Wine was made to be accompanied by fabulous food. Pinot Noir and decadent French cheeses, sauvignon blanc and fresh flaky fish – these are marriages made in heaven.
Watch Your Relationship
There are a thousand ways we glam-up our relationship with wine – oversized novelty wine glasses and promises to friends to crack ten bottles after a bad day. But we really need to watch our subconscious pairing of alcohol as a remedy for a bad day or coping strategy for stress as this is when a relationship can go toxic. Take a look at your relationship to wine; is it used as a sensory pleasure or to combat pain?
What’s your relationship with wine? Any favourite bottles? Drop your thoughts in the comments below.