Wine and Headaches


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Wine and Headaches

Midlife | | Dec 19, 2006 06:09 PM

This subject has been discussed here before, but I am constantly searching for an answer for people who want to drink wine (especially red) but find that it gives them headaches. I am familiar with the UC Davis material that has lately suggested this may be caused by histamines rather than the more often blamed sulfites. But there are also people with allergy to sulfites who react negatively in varying ways. And sulfites MAY related to headache in spite of the academic direction away from that cause.

Is anyone here aware of definitive research that would give these people a direction to try?

As to the sulfite cause - At one point it seemed to make logical sense that there might be some help in the area of organic and bio-dynamic wines, but that has turned out to be a dead-end. Reason being that these wines may be healthier because of how the fruit is grown, but there is no connection to the winemaking process itself. Sulfites are a natural by-product of fermentation, and even biodynamic wineries can and do add small amounts of sulfites in the process as well. (Got that one from the 'horse's' mouth.... a winemaker at a biodynamic/organic winery.)

Many people who suffer headaches here at home say that they don't get headaches while consuming even larger amounts of wine while vacationing in Italy or France. Since sulfites are not absent from wines there either, it could have something to do with any added levels....... or possibly just that people on vacation aren't likely to be as prone to headaches which have a component coming from stress or tension (not much of that at a village in Tuscany).

So, do any of you Hounds have anything definitive on this subject?

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