For many people, headaches are pretty common after drinking wine. Often enough, wine headaches are due to them not drinking enough water. However, there are other causes behind these wine headaches. Knowing these culprits can help you better avoid headaches yourself next time you drink wine…
Wine Headaches: Where Do They Come From?
The first potential cause of wine headaches are tannins. These are naturally occurring compounds found in grapes. In fact, if you’ve ever felt that dry-mouth sensation that comes from drinking wine, those tannins were responsible. However, for some people, these might be the cause of their headaches.
A good way to test if these tannins are the culprit is to preform the “black tea test”. Black tea is also very high in tannins content. So, you can brew a cup of black tea, but allow for the tea to steep about 5 minutes longer than usual. This will ensure all the tannins get into the drink. Drink the tea, and if you get a headache, then you’ll know the tannins are responsible.
Another cause of wine headaches is sugar. Alcohol and sugar can be a pretty nasty combo. Both substances need water in order for your body to process them. This means that if you’re ingesting them both at the same time, your body needs to use more fluids, which can cause headaches.
A good way to avoid sugar in your wines is to skip out on dessert wines. Like the name implies, these wines tend to have a lot of sugar in them to help simulate the dessert flavors. You might also want to avoid sweet or semi-dry white wines, which can also have high sugar levels.
Last on the list for the culprits of wine headaches are histamines. These are the chemicals which are released when we have allergic reactions. Usually, these cause runny noses, watery eyes, and sometimes headaches. So how do they end up in wines?
As it turns out, research finds that food and drinks which have been aged, like say red wines, can cause the body to release histamines. This can result in you getting a headaches, even if you aren’t allergic to any of the ingredients. However, taking a histamine-blocker beforehand can help prevent these symptoms.