Which wine is healthy and best for you? With all the sensationalist, misleading headlines about wine and beer causing cancer, this is a very popular question at the moment. There are two parts to the answer – firstly which wine has actual health benefits, and secondly which wine has the least negative effects! In my usual waffling manner I’ll answer part two first.

Wine is permitted by law to have upto around 80 different chemicals added. The EU lawmakers justify this by saying that wine is such a wide and varied subject with thousands of different grape varieties, unlimited different microclimates, weather patterns, producers, production methods……..that they need the flexibility to use these chemicals to help correct potential problems. Unfortunately the truth is that cheap, mass produced wines are full of these chemicals and contain high levels of sulphites which are believed to cause mouth, throat and abdominal cancers as well as asthma of course. So no mass produced wine is good for you. In fact they are likely to all be very bad for you! That horrendous hangover isn’t caused by the alcohol – it is caused by the cocktail of chemicals in the wine. If it makes you feel that bad consider what harm it must actually be doing to your body. Drink some sulphite free wine (in moderation) and you will wake up without a hangover and actually feel healthy in the morning.

So which wine is actually good for you?

There is a lot of talk about Resveratrol, nature’s most powerful anti oxidant, which is found in grape skins. Resveratrol actively neutralises the harmful free radicals in your body which cause cancer. The Polyphenols are also attributed to be good for the heart, and help lower bad cholesterol. These are both found in small quantities in good red wine, so in theory good red wine is the healthiest choice. Renowned physician and winemaker Dr Phil Norrie who produces Resveratrol enhanced wines, says that “people who regularly drink good red wine are less likely to die of any cause (illness – it won’t stop you being hit by a bus!) than people who don’t”. He has researched the link between wine and health for 30 years and has had many articles pubished. In fact in this article Dr Phil Norrie states – and quotes medical research from many of the world’s leading medical professionals – that drinking good red wine can have the following benefits. It is a staggering report, backed up by medical eveidence – well worth a read!
1. Reduced vascular disease which kills up to 50% of us resulting : –
(a) Reduced Coronary Heart Disease by up to 50%(9)
(b) Reduced Ischaemic Stroke (Ischaemic strokes account for 90-95% of all
(c) Reduced Deep Vein Thrombosis by up to 50% (11)
(d) Reduced Ostoeporosis (12)
(e) Increased Intellect in the Elderly(7)
(f) Reduced Macular Degeneration (a common cause of blindness) by up to 34%(8)
(g) Reduced Renal Failure (up to 50% of renal failure due to Vascular disease)(13)
2. Tonic – wine contains many substances including most vitamins, minerals, trace
elements, proteins and carbohydrates (1)
3. Fat and cholesterol free source of carbohydrate(1)
4. Reduced cancer because the Antioxidants in wine block free radicals causing
damage to the cell’s nucleus (12)

5. Reduced blood pressure (15)

6. Antiseptic due to alcohol and more importantly polyphenols (16)

7. Increases morale and appetite – nursing home and hospital patients (25) + (5)

8. Wine contains Quercetin, Resveratrol and Epicatechin, which are Nature’s most

Potent antioxidants and also act as anti-carcinogens (17)

9. Reduction in colds / URTI by up to 85% (18)

10. Diabetes reduced by up to 50% because the antioxidants reduce insulin resistance.

Dry wine best alcoholic drink that is allowed with diabetes as all the sugar has

been converted to alcohol.(19)

11. Reduced gallstones by up to 30% (20)

12. Reduced kidney stones by up to 39% (21)

13. Reduced Alzheimer’s disease and mult infarct (stroke) forms of dementia by up to


14. Reduced Parkinson’s disease (22)

15. Improved digestion (5)

16. Reduced H. Pylori infection of the stomach and duodenum leading to reduced

Ulcers (23)

17. Improved physical and intellectual condition in the elderly (7)

18. Reduced Hepatitis A (24)

19. Reduced stress and depression (25)

20. Reduced essential tremor (26)

21. Reduced tooth decay (27)

22. Reduced cancer of the prostate by upto 50%

 Read Dr Phil’s full article here (4 pages)

However the vast majority of red wines, even the expensive ones, still have chemicals added – sulphites in particular. Even EU Organic wine, legally labelled as “wine made from organically grown grapes” as it is only the actual grape growing which is certified, still has chemicals including sulphites added at the winemaking stage. And would you believe so do BIODYNAMIC certified wines! They are permitted to contain up to 90 mg/l of sulphites!

How do you find a good red wine which doesn’t contain these sulphites?

SoLo S02 Navitas is a sulphite free red wine made without the addition of any chemical substances at any stage right from the planting of the original vines, right through to the bottling of the wine. It is 100% natural – but also a beautiful wine in it’s own right. Due to the unique methods used in the vineyard and in the cellar SoLo S02 Navitas is packed full of natural anti oxidants and is very possibly THE healthiest wine available anywhere. You can buy it from specialist low sulphite/sulfite free wine online retailer www.goodwineonline.co.uk who have a good selection of great tasting, healthy sulphite free wines. They offer a case deal on the SoLo S02 Navitas.

Update 23rd March 2012

Solo are about to launch their much anticipated white wine in the UK at last! “Aurum Natura” (natural gold) is a blend of 65% Chardonnay, 30% Marsanne and 5% Viognier. It’s made from grapes grown on vineyards which have never used any chemicals. The wine was made without any chemical intervention too, except for a tiny splash of sulphites (only 6% of the permitted level!) at bottling to retain the wine’s natural acidity.Solo Aurum Natura is a pure, natural wine with delicious full fruit flavours and a crisp acidity on the dry finish – the first wine of it’s kind anywhere. It’s also vegan friendly and gluten free, and is perfectly safe even for sulphite intolerant people. It’s available to buy online from www.goodwineonline.co.uk