Another point in the “win” column for moderate red wine (and grape juice) drinkers? According to researchers out of Oregon, moderate consumption of red wine/grape juice may help you burn additional fat.
In this lab study, human liver and fat cells were exposed to four chemicals found in Muscadine grapes (found in the southeastern US). One of these four natural chemicals was noted to slow the growth of existing fat cells, prevent new ones from forming and boosted the metabolism of fatty acids in liver cells.
While there is fairly strong evidence concerning red wine consumption and heart health, and even evidence for cavity-fighting power, drinking red wine or grape juice for weight loss may not be so straightforward.
It is important to note that this study was isolated to combining four chemicals found in this particular Muscadine grape to lab-grown liver and fat cells. The effects are encouraging, but taking this data and applying it to the real world may be a bit of a stretch. There are many biological processes that occur when wine is digested that may block or interfere with the benefits of red wine consumption on weight loss. The results of this study also do not take into account the additional calories consumed drinking red wine or grape juice, which may easily outweigh the benefit of certain grape chemicals on weight loss.
Take Home Point
While consumption of red wine in moderation (2 glasses for men, 1 for women) is encouraged as part of a heart-healthy Mediterranean diet, there is not yet enough strong evidence to recommend consuming red wine or grape juice as part of a weight loss program. If you do not drink red wine or grape juice, by all means, do not start.