Despite the alcohol content, wine has long been associated with various benefits to your health when consumed in moderation. What a lot of people aren’t aware of is the health benefits of organic wine when compared to conventional wine.
Wine bottle labels are required by law to indicate alcohol strength and the country of origin. What they don’t mention are any preservatives, chemicals or added sugars they may have. As a result, it is hard to say what your favourite glass of wine actually contains.
The key to avoiding harmful chemical content and healthier wine drinking lies in switching to organic wine. It comes as an excellent option for health-conscious wine drinkers who fear they are consuming harmful artificial additives when drinking conventional, supermarket wines.
Below are five reasons why you should consider drinking organic wine. It won’t take you long to realise why organic wine is becoming more and more popular every year:
Organic grapes are not sprayed with harmful chemical pesticides, fertilisers and herbicides. As a result, organic wine is a more natural and cleaner product to consume.
When winemakers spray grapes and vines with pesticides and herbicides, they are trying to kill off any unwanted weeds and insects which attack the vines. Unfortunately, the residues from these sprays can end up in your wine, surrounding soil and river systems. Organic wines have not been sprayed which is therefore one of the health benefits of organic wine.
Whenever you see a wine bottle with the label ‘organic’, this refers to what happens in the vineyard as well as the winemaking process that differs from conventional wines. To grow organic grapes, a vineyard must follow entirely different agricultural practices. In simple terms, this means maintaining the health and condition of their vines with more natural methods than what is done in a conventional winery.
Sulphites refer to sulphur dioxide (SO2), which is a preservative widely used in winemaking owing to its antibacterial properties.
It’s generally harmless to consume sulphites unless you have severe asthma or lack the particular enzymes needed to break down sulphites in your body. Some wine drinkers experience allergic reactions to sulphites in their wine such as as rash, hives, cramps and blotchy skin.
The amount of sulphites in wine is highly regulated around the world. Any bottle of wine having more than ten parts per million (ppm) must include on the label “contains sulphites.” European wine may contain up to 210 ppm sulphites, while the American wines have an upper limit of 350 ppm.
Organic wine is regulated by different bodies around the world, such as Demeter, USDA Organic and Eco Cert. Their labels or logos will be on bottles of wine if they are a certified organic producer. With regards to the use of sulphites in organic wine, they are a lot lower than what is allowed in conventional wines. Less sulphites means a more natural wine and as a result, another health benefit of organic wine.
One criticism of supermarket bulk wine is their added sugar content. Any perceived sweetness of wine can come from sugars, both naturally occurring and artificially added.
The amount of sugar in a wine, natural or added, will determine the final alcohol content of the wine. This leads winemakers to adding sugar during the winemaking process to achieve their desired alcohol by volume (ABV) %. This is a process in winemaking known as chaptalisation, whose purpose is solely to increase the alcohol content. At the same time, winemakers may also add sugar to hide imperfections in taste resulting from the use of poor quality grapes.
When winemakers add sugar in excess of naturally occurring sugars in the grapes, the final product is sweet—something that only novice wine drinkers may like. The health benefits of organic wine are seen from the fact that they do not contain added sugars. This makes it perfectly suitable for those who wish to shed some pounds because it reduces their overall sugar intake.
Whether you join a wine club or become a connoisseur on your own, you are sure to see the health benefits of organic wine. Organic wines are free of additives such as refined sugar, sulphuric acids and fining and clarification agents.
Organic winemaking practices avoid using chemicals and promote biodiversity in our environment. The use of chemicals can spoil the PH balance of the soil, kill environmentally beneficial insects and weeds, and pollute groundwater and local waterways. Organic wine is natural, sustainable and much more eco-friendly compared to conventional wine.
As we have talked about in detail above, organic wines have fewer sulphites and artificial chemicals. By drinking organic wine you will lessen the effect of any potential headache, allowing you to enjoy a couple of glasses and still be on form the next day.
The health benefits of organic wine are worth every wine lovers consideration. However, you should keep yourself hydrated while relishing the taste of different organic wines and avoid consuming more than the Chief Medical Officer’s recommendations. If you know someone who might be interested in organic wine, then perhaps a gift wine subscription is also worth considering.
Organic wine accounts for 3.6% of global wine consumption. In the UK this figure is currently higher at 5%. By 2022 this will have nearly doubled with 9% of total wine consumption in the UK being certified organic. It’s clear that oenophiles out there are buying into the idea, embracing the health benefits of organic wine.
If you are looking to buy some organic wine online then read our post on the top five retailers to buy organic wine online. There is some more information about organic wine, along with some links to useful resources.