Is sparkling wine good for me? Health benefits of Sekt, Cava, Champagne and Co.

Some people say an extra glass of sparkling wine will take 30 minutes off your life. To which I can only respond: Who knows what is tomorrow? I could be dead. Imagine the loss. It’s 30 minutes more enjoyment while I’m drinking sparkling wine. Good sparkling wine that is. Life is too short for a bad glass of bubbly.

Dorothy Flowers is 108-year-old. She said bubbly is the key to a long life. So forget diamonds. I always knew bubbles are a girl’s best friend.

It doesn’t take a scientist to tell you that drinking sparkling wine has health benefits for you. Already the pop of a cork can cause a feeling of happiness. We enjoy the fizz of bubbles in our glass. Our palates are filled with delicious flavors and sensations. And we let our troubles go.

Health benefits and harmful impacts of sparkling wine

For the ones of you that like to have scientific reasons to pop a bottle open or not, here you go. Sparkling wine and its alcohol has impacts on your health. Good and bad ones.

I do not say drink in moderation but know your limit. Over-imbibing hurts your health.

Heart-healthy effects

Sparkling wine is just as beneficial for your heart as red wine. An University of Reading study shows that two glasses of champagne a day may be helpful for your heart and circulation. Due to the high levels of polyphenols. That are anti-oxidants found in red grapes which can lower blood pressure and prevent heart problems. In other words they could reduce the risks of suffering from heart disease and stroke.

Memory loss

Another study at the University of Reading determined that drinking one to three glasses of champagne each week can boost brain health. The study was done on rats. Half of the rats were served champagne every day for six weeks. Than they were tasked with completing a maze. With the result that the sober rats had an average success rate of 50 percent, the bubbly drinkers had a 70 percent success rate.

Before you cheer and clap now: Sorry but rats are, clearly, not people. Dr. David Vauzour, the researcher on the study, said: “in the near future we will be looking to translate these findings into humans.” That didn’t happen until now according to my knowledge. Sparkling wine has no health benefits if it comes to slow down human dementia and memory loss.

In that case the truth is the following: Memory loss is a very common side effect of excessive drinking. Your short-term memory can start to be affected after only a few drinks in some cases. You may appear awake and alert, but in reality you black out and have no idea what happened the next day.

I remember friends telling me what happened while I was binge drinking. And even then I was not able to recall it. Drinking sparkling wine clearly didn’t help here.

Glowing Skin

Sparkling wine can have a health benefits for your skin. Champagne’s carbon dioxide may help tighten your skin, and its polyphenols combat redness. But only if you apply it with a cotton ball.

Guzzling it down has the opposite effect. It takes all the fluid out of the skin. Your skin tissue gets inflamed and red. Worst case you develop prominent facial redness over a period of time.

Calories

Drinking can lead to weight gain. Alcohol is appetizing while being empty calories.

In Germany we say: 3 beers are a Schnitzel. And after that you didn’t have any drink yet. So you drink more. And when you consume alcohol, your body burns it first for energy. As a result, fat and carbs may be stored as fat.

While a glass of red or white wine contains between 135 and 200 calories, a glass of brut sparkling wine has only 95. “Low dosage” sparklers have less sugar. It’s mere 65 calories per glass. That does not sound much? Oh believe me it is. It’s easy to consume sparkling wine in excess. Thus, the calories can add up.

I’m a fine example. I deserve half a bottle of bubbly each day. Quick mental math… You can also use your pocket brain…

Half a bottle of bubbly are 350 ml. That are 3,5 glasses of sparkling wine. All in all 332,5 calories for brut sparkler. Best case scenario. In fact I drink low dosage bubbles from time to time. The other times the bottles have more residual sugar. In conclusion that means I drink in average more calories than 332,5 each day.

For that reason the sparkling wine is going directly to my hips if I skip the daily walk.

Conclusion: Move your ass and you can drink bubbles every day.

You want to know more about the residual sugar in sparkling wine? Check out the post How much residual sugar is in your sparkling wine?

Headache

Firstly, carbonation makes you forget that you are thirsty. Dehydration is one of the main causes of hangover symptoms, like headache.

Secondly, sparkling wine you drink more and faster because it’s easy going. It takes much longer to empty a bottle of rich red wine than a bottle of bubbly. Drinking too quickly will lead to a fast build up of alcohol in your bloodstream. That inflames the tissue and the result is again, a sore head.

Conclusion: Stay hydrated and drink more water! Additional benefit: It is healthy for your skin in the long run.

Is sparkling wine good for me?

The carbon dioxide (CO2) effect

Carbon dioxide is a chemical reaction of carbon and oxygen. The formula is CO2. CO2 is an incombustible, acidic and colorless gas. It dissolves well in water.

You are getting faster drunk of sparkling (carbonated) drinks than still non-sparkling drinks. That is the result of a study of the British University of Surrey. Part of the participants drank freshly opened champagne. Others got champagne without bubbles. The bubbles were stirred out. Both groups drank the same amount of sparkling wine.

After five minutes the sparkling group had 0,54 per thousand blood alcohol. The others only 0,39 per thousand. Reason was obviously the CO2 bubbles.

Carbonic acid stimulates the blood flow of any mucous membrane, from the pancreas and liver to the skin. That means that under those circumstances more alcohol can be absorbed and gets into the bloodstream.

Aphrodisiac qualities

It is easy to speculate about all the influences on Champagne’s sexy reputation. In reality it is a myth and not proven by studies so far. Proven is that alcohol relaxes, makes you talkative, sociable and very giddy.

It is known that alcohol lowers inhibition by acting as a sedative on the central nervous system. In addition as shown above alcohol in carbonated drinks is absorbed faster than in still forms of alcohol.

This means that also a gin and tonic gets you giddy. Does that sound sexy? No!

Where all the studies seem to agree is that the giddy effect of sparkling wine only seems to last around half an hour. So if you’re using sparkling wine for seduction, you better hurry up and watch the clock.

Summary

Sparkling wine is joy in a bottle and adds some sparkle to your life. It slows down life and helps the soul decompress. Life gets a little brighter.

In most European cultures sparkling wine is traditionally a stimulant when consumed in moderation. Knowing bubbles and respecting them is a secure method to avoid over-imbibing of alcohol.

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