If you’re cutting carbs, it can feel like alcohol is verboten. Red wine does have carbohydrates — and if you’re following a keto diet, then you know that the daily carb limit is just 30 grams (That’s two slices of white bread).
Even though it’s always better to get your carbs from whole foods (like fresh, keto-approved raspberries or strawberries), sometimes budgeting allows for a glass — or two! — of your favorite red wine.
What is the Standard Amount of Carbs for a Glass of Red Cabernet Sauvignon Taste?
A common misconception is that you can fill a vase with flowers and call it one serving of wine when a single serving is only 5-6 ounces. For perspective, the average pour (5 oz.) of red wine has 3.5-4 grams of carbs – which may not seem like much, but it depends on the type of grapes used and where they were grown.
Know Your Reds
There are a few things you need to know if you want to drink wine while adhering to the keto diet: If you’re out at a restaurant or bar, take notice of how big the wine servings are – this will clue you in on how many carbs will affect your diet—indulging and staying home with an expensive bottle? Make sure to share it with friends, so no one has too much.
Bottled wine is the way to go if you’re planning on drinking your wine a few days after opening it. However, if you don’t mind lessened pretense and ceremony, consider boxed red wines — some are just as good as bottled wine but can last up to 6 weeks at room temperature once opened.
If you’re usually a Malbec drinker, consider switching to Pinot Noir or cabernet sauvignon grape. It’s domestic and has fewer carbs per serving.
Number of carbohydrates in various wine types (per 5 ounces)
- Pinot Noir: about 3.5 grams
- Shiraz/Syrah: just under 4 grams
- Cabernet Sauvignon: just under 4 grams
- Petit Sirah: 4 grams on the nose
- Malbec: 4 grams
- Zinfandel: just over 4 grams
Steer clear of sweet red wine. Although uncommon, dry varieties are available. Be on the lookout for the following labeling terms, which all signify high sugar content (and thus more carbohydrates per serving size):
- Late harvest
- Ice wine
- Semi sec
Try A Red Wine Spritzer
Wine spritzers are making a comeback because they refresh you and are also low on alcohol content. White wine is more common for this type of drink; however, red wine can create a lovely pink cocktail:
Mix 2 to 3 ounces of your preferred dry red wine with a seltzer or club soda for a delicious and refreshing drink. Add a handful of raspberries and mint leaves.
Great Red Wine Alternatives
Mix it up by trying some hard liquor instead of wine next time. A few low-carb alcohol options are bourbon, gin, rum, scotch, tequila, vodka, and whiskey. Something to keep in mind is that they DO, however, have calories – all coming from the alcohol (7 calories per gram).
When adding mixers like tonic or seltzer water, be mindful as these often contain high amounts of carbs. The simplest way to drink your spirit is neat/over ice with a splash of club soda and a twist of citrus for flavor.
How Do Cabernet Sauvignon Grape Wine’s Health Benefits Compare to Other Drinks?
Wine has many more benefits than other types of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
When talking about alcoholic drinks, it’s important to note that spirits like vodka, whiskey, rum, and tequila don’t contain carbs. However, they have a higher calorie count because of their alcohol content.
Other drinks, such as beer or liqueurs, have more carbs than wine. This is also the case for many non-alcoholic carbonated drinks that we often drink without realizing their composition. Red wines generally have the lowest amount of carbs, followed by whites and sweet, off-dry, and fortified wines.
Is It “Healthy” To Drink Wine?
Of course, the answer is yes!
Just like everything else, moderation is key when it comes to alcohol. Make sure you know the most recent drinking guidelines and live a balanced lifestyle with healthy eating habits and regular exercise.
Wines with fewer carbs, such as Pinot Noir, are the best choice if you stick to a low-carb diet.
The most important lesson from this is: don’t waste your calories on bad wine!
You Must Drink Plenty Of Water Daily.
The Ketogenic, or “Keto” diet is composed of foods that are high in fat (around 70%), moderate protein (about 25%), and very few carbs (only 5%). This means that your liver and kidneys will be working overtime to metabolize all of this food, so you must drink lots of water while on Keto. Also, alcohol can cause dehydration, so it’s essential to drink plenty of water when consuming alcohol on this diet.
A keto diet should not be considered a long-term solution because it might have some health risks. You might want to try a modified keto diet that allows you to drink more red wine.