Wine Calories and Health Benefits

White wine

Verywell / Alexandra Shytsman

Red, white, bubbly, and beyond—with so many options and no nutrition labels on the bottles, choosing a glass of wine can be a challenge. But it doesn’t have to be! Wine is a favorite for many, and the alcohol in it may actually raise "good" HDL cholesterol and reduce blood clots.

Reds: Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Syrah, Bordeaux, and More

About 125 calories per 5-ounce glass

When you think red wine, think heart health! Reds contain antioxidants that fight bad cholesterol and may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Red wines may even combat aging, boost immunity, and increase energy, thanks to probiotics, polyphenols, and those antioxidants.

Did you know that reds contain more antioxidants than white, rosé, or sparkling? The antioxidants come from grape skins, and since red wine is fermented longer than other kinds of wine, it wins the antioxidant award. Cheers! Enjoy a glass with the gals or with a delicious low-carb "pasta" dinner.

Whites: Riesling, Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and More

White wine
Verywell / Alexandra Shytsman

About 120 calories per 5-ounce glass 

Although white wine doesn’t have the super-high antioxidant count that red wine has, it still has a lot of potential health benefits. Researchers at the University at Buffalo School of Medicine found that white wine may help improve lung health. And the University of Wisconsin discovered that white wine (like red wine) may help protect cells from breast cancer.

When choosing a white, know this: dry means less sugar. Looking for a smart snack pairing? White wine goes perfectly with cheesy snacks.


About 100 calories per 5-ounce glass

Rosé is surprisingly low in calories compared to red and white wines, partly due to the lower alcohol content. And it’s attractive to boot!

But this wine is more than just a pretty face. Rosé contains polyphenol antioxidants, which can help regulate cholesterol and blood pressure. Those polyphenols are found in the grape skins, where rosé gets its perfectly pink color. With so many varieties to choose from, find a shade that suits you.

Tip: Rosé pairs well with almost anything! Try it with a super-easy foil-pack dinner.​

Sparkling Wine (a.k.a Champagne)

About 80 calories per 4-ounce glass

Champagne isn’t just for weddings and New Year’s Eve. It’s great for celebrations big and small! It has the same health benefits as red wine since it’s often made with both red and white grapes. Sparkling wine is usually lower in alcohol compared to other wines (which translates to being lower in calories). And since it's often sipped in smaller glasses, the calorie count is even lower.

Tip: Use the sparkling wine of your choice in a sangria for a fun, bubbly twist.

FitVine Wine

Reduced-calorie wine does exist! With no residual sugar, FitVine Wine has just 90 to 95 calories per 5-ounce glass. There are reds and whites available, both with more antioxidants and fewer sulfites than traditional wine. They're a bit mild in flavor, but I like them! 

By Lisa Lillien
Lisa Lillien is a New York Times bestselling author and the creator of Hungry Girl, where she shares healthy recipes and realistic tips and tricks.