All you need to know about low sulphite wines: 4 facts and many reasons why you should switch

Posted on April 05, 2017 by Dimitri Safonov | 0 comments

Low sulphite wine: 4 facts about sulphite free wine and healthy food

We've been writing about wines made with no added sulphites, wine intolerances and took some interviews from winemakers who produce natural wines without sulphites added. Yet these wines are made in tiny quantities, the demand for healthier wines is rising and people want to know more about the differences between 'no sulphites added', natural and conventional wines. Follow this guide and its 4 quick facts about low sulphite wines to learn more.

Fact 1 - Sulphites are bad news

You have probably read on our blog that

  • organic wines have restriction on sulphites, so they have lower than 100 mg/l levels;
  • excessive amounts of sulphites is bad for you and the ordinary bottle of conventional wine can have 3 times more sulphites than organic wine;
  • our strictly no added sulphites wine cases contain wines with under 10 mg/l of sulphites and only naturally occurring; 
  • asthmatics feel the effect of sulphites the most usually already above 45 mg/l.

It all means that sulphites are not great for you anyways. We do sometimes consume foods that are not entirely great for us, but if we've got a choice about having the same delicious produce but without harmful additives and chemicals, wouldn't it be sensible to switch?

World Health Organisation recommends that only 0.7mg/l of sulphites (sulfites) should be consumed per 1 kg of weight per day. It means that an adult of 70kg weight, who bought natural wine that contains 30 mg/l naturally occurring sulphites, can have a few large glasses of wine (up to half bottle). Obviously, when conventional wines containing over 150 mg/l it means much more harm to your body.  

Fact 2 - More than 2.5 million people cannot drink conventional wine

Let’s check the facts and do some basic calculations.

Alexandra Richmond, senior health and beauty analyst at Mintel, said: ''An estimated 21 million adults in the UK suffer from at least one allergy, with 10 million suffering from more than one. There is a whopping 4 out of 10 people to suffer from allergic reaction during their life'.

NHS statistics also says that 4.3 million adults are currently suffering from asthma in the UK. Asthmatics are very sensitive to sulphites. Similar data exists for general sulphite intolerance: the numbers are reported as low as 3-5%, yet if you take the whole population of the UK it will mean millions would be much better off without drinking wines with excessive sulphites in them. Millions of people around us cannot enjoy a glass of wine without feeling nauseous, experiencing breathing difficulties or, in case of asthmatics, putting themselves at risk.

As the numbers are growing, our concern is on the rise that we consume too much preservatives in our foods. 

Fact 3 - Unfortunately there is no such thing as sulphite free wine

It is true. Sadly, some minor quantities of sulphites are occurring naturally in every wine. All natural wines contain some small quantities too, yet these are generally very low - under 10 mg/l or slightly more (depends on the soil, i.e. volcanic). Naturally occurring sulphites are generally harmless and exist in tiny quantities. That is why there is a difference between ‘no added sulphites wines’ and low sulphite wines. The latter will have a low amount of sulphites added, but they also will be between 10 and 45mg/l - most people won’t notice them. We tend to call them natural wines. They are made with minimal interventions in the winery and its lower sulphite contents will mean they are healthier for you too.

Fact 4 - It is not just about wine

We are consuming a lot of sulphites in general. There are some foods that are full of these nasty preservatives. Here are some examples of such foods (see more details in our wine intolerance article):

  • pickled foods and vinegar
  • dried fruit eg dried apricots, prunes, raisins etc
  • tinned coconut milk
  • beer and cider
  • vegetable juices
  • some soft drinks
  • grape juice
  • condiments (bottled sauces etc.)
  • guacamole
  • dehydrated, pre-cut or peeled potatoes
  • fresh or frozen prawns
  • some processed meat products

We’ve learned to look at the labels, preferably go for organic produce and, when possible, create sauces from scratch or go for more natural produce (not ready meals and so on). It is time to think about your wines.

Do you really know what’s in your wine?

If you are intrigued and ready to try low sulphite wines yourself, here is a link to our Sulphite Free Wine Cases.

Organic Wine Club has got the largest range of sulphite free wine in the UK and it means we are your one stop destination for healthier wines produced with no sulphites added. Choose natural wines for a better you!

Posted in sulphite-free


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