You’re enjoying a social weekend and even though you only drank a glass or two of wine, you have a splitting headache. Sound familiar? Why does this happen? In this blog I’ll solve the mystery and offer you a solution.
Everyone knows drinking wine can cause headaches. What many people don’t know is that it is often the sulfites in wine that cause that sore head. And if you’re sulfite sensitive, this can happen even after just one or two glasses.
Why wine contains sulfites.
Sulfites, also known as E numbers E220 through E228, are a conservative. They preserve the flavour and quality of your precious wine when it’s being transported from wherever it was made to your table. Every wine contains sulfites. It even says so on the label. Since 2005 winemakers are obliged to include this information on every bottle – take a look and see!
Possible symptoms of sulfite sensitivity
Sulfite sensitivity can show up in a number of ways. Headaches are the most common complaint, but rashes, a stuffy nose, sneezing, sleeplessness or digestive problems can also result from sulfites. But complaints after drinking wine can also be caused by the alcohol or histamines. Later on in this blog I’ll tell you about a solution I’ve developed to tell whether sulfites are the culprit.
How sulfites cause headaches
If you are sensitive to sulfites, your body cannot transform the sulfites into sulfates quickly enough. Due to the excess of sulfites in your body the glutathione levels in your liver decrease. And it’s exactly this glutathione which normally ensures the processing and discharge of alcohol from your liver.
These low levels of glutathione mean that you have more unwelcome residue in your blood than normal. And that’s what causes the headaches, even after 1 or 2 glasses of wine. This also explains why you don’t get headaches from fruit juices or raisins. These also contain sulfites, but no alcohol.
No need to stop drinking wine!
Rashes, headaches and heart palpitations as a result of drinking wine don’t mean you have to go teetotal. There is a small group of winemakers that produce natural wine: ‘vin natural’. During the grape growing and wine production process, as little as possible (what exactly?) is added or changed. This makes these wines almost 100% natural. There is actually a great wine bar in Amsterdam which only serves ‘vin naturel’: GlouGlou.
You can also try Stellar Organics wines (available in some organic shops). These wines have no added sulfites. Make sure you pick the bottles with ‘No added sulfites’ on the label! The major disadvantage is that these wines are hard to come by.
The solution for all complaints
As a sulfite-sensitive wine lover, I developed an alternative: Sulfree. One drop of Sulfree in your wine glass transforms the sulfites in the wine into sulfates (without changing the taste). Headaches, hot flashes, sleeplessness disappear like snow under the sun. Sound too good to be true? I can imagine you have a few questions. That’s why I’d like to ask you to take a few moments to think about drinking wine. Grab our checklist and find out if you are sulfite-sensitive right now.
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