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January 01, 2009 - Wine Sales

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Red Wine Headache - Sulfites, Histamines or ?


There was so much discussion after I posted John Kelly's article regarding sulfites, wines and headaches, I did some further research and wanted to pass the information along.
Red Wine Headache (RWH) is a well documented phenomenon. But there is no definitive information regarding RWH because there is no funding available for research. There is no evidence that sulfites are the cause of wine headaches. In fact, research done with subjects known to have sulfite allergies confirm that headaches are not one of the symptoms they experience when drinking wine. White wines often contain more sulfites than reds, and dried fruit contain sulfites and no one who eats either complains of headaches. So what is the culprit?

Some have suspected tannins, but tea, soy and chocolate have tannins and don't seem to be an issue.
Red wine has a lot more histamines than white, but there was a report in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology regarding a study of 16 people with an intolerance to wine, found no difference in reactions to low- and high-histamine wines.

Right now it looks like the cause may be prostaglandins, hormone like substances that may be responsible for the production of some types of pain and inflammation. A new study showed a distinct decrease in headaches in subjects prone to RWH and given prostaglandin inhibitors. In some non-controlled studies it looks like taking aspirin, which reduces prostaglandin production, may control or reduce RWH.
As I get more information I will post it and if any readers have any information please pass it along.

The Wine Rack: Red Wine Headache- sulfites, histamines or ??



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Red Wine Headache - Sulfites, Histamines or ?


There was so much discussion after I posted John Kelly's article regarding sulfites, wines and headaches, I did some further research and wanted to pa...


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