I’ve already discussed which vodkas are paleo friendly, so I might as well get into wine which is probably a more popular drink choice by many. The good news is that of all the choices for alcohol, wine is probably the best option for paleo people. The type of wine is something that should be taken into consideration though.
I’m not about to break down every brand of wine, because there are thousands of them so I apologize if I didn’t bring up a specific 2 buck chuck or Coppola wine. Those are also the only 2 I know off the top of my head.
Is Alcohol Paleo?
Short answer is…no. If you take the primal lifestyle 100% based on caveman life, then you’ll have a hard time finding evidence of Grok drinking a glass of Pinot Grigio. That isn’t to say that our paleolithic ancestors never consumed alcohol though. Natural fermentation can occur in fruit, juices, and other things that our ancestors consumed. They just weren’t in the high concentrations as we get today from our shots of Grey Goose, but it was ingested, and our bodies were/are able to break down the alcohol.
This is one of those vices in the paleo diet where you have to make a personal decision on whether or not you want to boot this from your life or not. Drinking specific types of alcohol in moderation can be fine depending on your own personal wants and needs. I will have a glass or 2 of wine a couple times a week. Beer I’ve taken from my diet. Vodka soda has made its way into my networking drinks so I don’t look like a weirdo ordering an iced tea at a bar.
Is Wine OK on the Paleo Diet?
That’s going to be a soft yes. As alcohol is not totally paleo because of the processed nature of it and the damage it can cause, there are actually some benefits to drinking wine that could outweigh the reasons not to drink it. I’ll get more into the benefits of drinking wine at the bottom of the article.
Wine is probably one of the first, if not the first, alcoholic drinks ever consumed by man. There is evidence to show that wine was made well over 5,000 years ago.
Best Types of Wine
The easy answer…organic red wine. I would consider the best type of wine for your diet to be something that is lowest in carbs/sugar while also containing the most nutrients. Reds are generally lowest in sugar. They also get their color because
You’ll want to look for the driest reds available.
Sugar per Ounce of Wine
Pinot noir: 0.68g carbs per ounce
Cabernet franc: 0.71g
Cabernet sauvignon: 0.75g
Pinot blanc: 0.57g carbs per ounce
Sauvignon blanc: 0.6g
Pinot grigio: 0.6g
I found a handy chart below from Winefolly.com. You can see in it that some of the best options are reds like Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. In comparison, some of the worst options are Moscato, Riesling, Champagne, Port, and Sherry t name a few.
Health Benefits of Wine
Wine comes loaded with antioxidants and polyphenols, particularly Resveratrol. Resveratrol is being found to be the main contributor to many of the benefits of drinking wine. This polyphenol is found much more in red wines because it’s found in high concentration in grape skins.
Benefits of drinking wine:
- Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and heart attacks
- Boosts HDL (good cholesterol) and prevents LDL (bad cholesterol) from causing damage to arteries
- May slow the growth of breast cancer cells
- Might help ward off oral cancer
- May cut their risk of osteoporosis
Remember, drink in moderation. Just because wine has been shown to increase life expectancy, that doesn’t mean 2 bottles a day will help you live to 200.
BONUS: How to Avoid a Wine Hangover
I’ve been through many hangovers in my life. I was a frat guy in college, so you can only imagine what I put my poor liver though. These days drinking is not a common thing, but when I do throw a few back, the hangovers are worse than ever. I drink less and feel worse than I did in my early 20s. I have found a few things that help me avoid hangovers the next day…
- Drink less alcohol
- Drink a glass of water for every glass of booze
- Eat a meal high in protein and fat before or during your drinking session
- Take activated charcoal pills 1-2 hours before drinking
- Drink a bottle of water before bed