By Kerri-Ann Jennings
Whether you prefer white or red wine is generally a matter of taste.
But if you want the healthiest pick, which should you choose?
Red wine has drawn lots of attention for its research-backed potential to lower the risk of heart disease and lengthen your lifespan.
Does white wine have the same benefits?
This article will review what you need to know about red and white wine—how they're made, what to watch out for and which is healthier.
What Is Wine?
Wine is made from fermented grape juice.
Grapes are picked, crushed and placed in buckets or vats to ferment. The process of fermentation turns the natural sugars in the grape juice into alcohol.
Fermentation can occur naturally, but sometimes winemakers add yeast to help control the process.
The crushed grapes are put through a press, which removes the skins and other sediment. Whether this step is done before or after fermentation determines whether the wine becomes red or white.
To make white wine, grapes are pressed before fermentation. Red wine is pressed after fermentation.
After this step, the wine is aged in stainless steel or oak barrels until it's ready to be bottled.
Summary: Wine is made from fermented grape juice. The grapes are picked, crushed and then allowed to ferment in buckets or vats.
What's the Difference Between Red and White Wine?
The main difference between white and red wine has to do with whether the grape juice is fermented with the grape skins.
To make white wine, grapes are pressed and skins, seeds and stems are removed before fermentation.
However, to make red wine, the crushed grapes are transferred to vats directly and they ferment with the skin, seeds and stems. The grape skins lend the wine its pigment, as well as many of the distinctive health compounds found in red wine.
As a result of steeping with the grape skins, red wine is particularly rich in plant compounds that are present in those skins, such as tannins and resveratrol (1).
White wine also has some of these healthy plant compounds, but generally in much lower amounts (2).
Many different grape varietals are used to produce wine, including Pinot Gris, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon.
While red varietals are used to make red wine, white wine can actually be made from red or white grapes. For instance, traditional French champagne is made with the red Pinot Noir grape.
Many countries produce wine. Some of the main wine-growing regions are in France, Italy, Spain, Chile, South Africa, Australia and California in the U.S.
While most regions grow several types of grape varietals, some places are particularly known for one or two, such as Napa Valley Chardonnay, Spanish Tempranillo and South African Chenin Blanc.
Summary: Red wine grapes are fermented with the skin on, which gives the wine its color and provides beneficial plant compounds. Grapes for white wine, on the other hand, have their skins removed.
Red and white wine have very similar nutrition profiles.
Overall, red wine has a slight edge over white because it has higher amounts of some vitamins and minerals. Nevertheless, white wine contains fewer calories.
Summary: In terms of nutrients, red and white wine are neck and neck. However, red wine has slightly higher levels of some vitamins and minerals.
By Brett Wilkins
One hundred seconds to midnight. That's how close humanity is to the apocalypse, and it's as close as the world has ever been, according to Wednesday's annual announcement from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, a group that has been running its "Doomsday Clock" since the early years of the nuclear age in 1947.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
- Scientists Discover New Population of Endangered Blue Whales ... ›
- Endangered Blue Whales Make 'Unprecedented' Comeback to ... ›
- Endangered North Atlantic Right Whale Calves Spotted Off Coast ... ›
- Only 366 Endangered Right Whales Are Alive: New NOAA Report ... ›
By Yoram Vodovotz and Michael Parkinson
The majority of Americans are stressed, sleep-deprived and overweight and suffer from largely preventable lifestyle diseases such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes. Being overweight or obese contributes to the 50% of adults who suffer high blood pressure, 10% with diabetes and additional 35% with pre-diabetes. And the costs are unaffordable and growing. About 90% of the nearly $4 trillion Americans spend annually for health care in the U.S. is for chronic diseases and mental health conditions. But there are new lifestyle "medicines" that are free that doctors could be prescribing for all their patients.
Taking an unconventional approach to conduct the largest-ever poll on climate change, the United Nations' Development Program and the University of Oxford surveyed 1.2 million people across 50 countries from October to December of 2020 through ads distributed in mobile gaming apps.
- Guardian/Vice Poll Finds Most 2020 Voters Favor Climate Action ... ›
- Climate Change Seen as Top Threat in Global Survey - EcoWatch ›
- The U.S. Has More Climate Deniers Than Any Other Wealthy Nation ... ›
By Tara Lohan
Fall used to be the time when millions of monarch butterflies in North America would journey upwards of 2,000 miles to warmer winter habitat.
A monarch butterfly caterpillar feeds on common milkweed on Poplar Island in Maryland. Photo: Will Parson/Chesapeake Bay Program, (CC BY-NC 2.0)