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Red Wine to Help Hearing, Study Says

Red Wine to Help Hearing, Study Says

We're off to buy a case of wine now, as an investment for the next 20 years of rock concerts

Good news winos; a new study in Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery suggests that red wine can actually help combat hearing loss.

Researchers found that rats who received a resveratrol (a substance found in wine) supplement showed a 90 percent reduction in the markers of inflammation that causes hearing loss, Mens' Health reports.

Rats who did not receive a resveratrol supplement were found to have hearing loss when researcherd measured markers of inflammation, DNA damage, and other notable signs of hearing loss.

Researchers suggest that resveratrol might actually relieve inflammation that causes hearing loss; and while the study focused mainly on rats, results could be applicable to humans as well.

Other foodstuffs that help fight hearing loss? Fish, obviously, as well as apples and fortified cereals, Men's Health reports. We'll be kicking off every rock concert and music festival with a bottle of red and some roasted fish from now on.


One Major Side Effect of Drinking a Glass of Wine, Says Science

We're betting you've heard that drinking wine is good for your heart health…and you've used that factoid as an excuse to splurge on your favorite cabernet with dinner at least once before. But that's the worst reason to drink wine.

Not to burst your bubble, but the jury is still out on whether wine actually has any heart-boosting properties. Sure, it has antioxidants that might lower your LDL cholesterol and your cardiovascular inflammation. But that only applies to red wine, not white, and even then some studies say wine has health benefits and some say…ehhh, maybe not.

So are there any confirmed side effects from enjoying a glass of vino every night? Yes, but you're not gonna like it: drinking even just one glass of wine is a surefire way to mess with your sleep.

If you're surprised, we get it—most people associate drinking a glass of wine with getting drowsy, and some people even purposely use a glass of wine to help them unwind and drift off to sleep at night. If wine makes you sleepy, then how can it be bad for your nightly zzz's? (Related: 9 Eating Habits That Are Hurting Your Sleep, According to Doctors.)

The problem lies not in the start of your sleep cycle (i.e. the falling asleep part), but in the later stages. One glass of wine can for sure help you nod off it has sedative and muscle relaxing properties. However, as your body starts to metabolize the alcohol, the sleepy effects wear off and cause disruptions in the second and third cycles of sleep—often about two to four hours after you initially dozed off.

If you're thinking "Okay, so what?" or assuming you can just roll over and go back to sleep, you should know that these alcohol-induced wakings can decrease the total amount of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep you get in a night.

This means you have a bigger problem than a night of less-than-stellar sleep: REM sleep is the deepest and most restorative kind of sleep there is, and not getting enough won't just leave you a little groggy in the morning. An ongoing deficit of sleep, also called sleep debt, can cause cognition impairments and increase your risk of certain health conditions, like mood disorders, diabetes and hypertension.

A recent 2020 study published in JAMA Neurology even linked reduced REM sleep to a higher incidence of death in older men as well as middle-aged men and women (yikes!).

Are you going to suffer terrible health effects with one infrequent glass of wine? Honestly, no. The amount of alcohol you drink definitely contributes to how much of these affects you feel. But the news isn't as good as you think: a 2018 study in JMIR Mental Health found that moderate and high amounts of alcohol clearly affected sleep…but so did low amounts, too, decreasing sleep quality by about 9%.

If you really want to drink a glass of wine with dinner on a regular basis, try to have it at least four hours before you normally hit the sack that should give your body enough time to metabolize the alcohol and go back to normal, preventing any late-stage sleep cycle disruptions. And if you're thinking about cutting out the boose entirely, check out Side Effects of Giving Up Alcohol, According to Science.

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Pinot Noir May Be the Healthiest Type of Wine to Drink, According to Experts

Uncork the findings behind these recent health findings.

If you&aposre looking for a reason to incorporate more pinot noir into your diet, you&aposre in luck. A recent article published in Forbes claims that pinot noir may be the healthiest type of wine to drink, and that&aposs thanks to the fact that it contains higher levels of resveratrol than other varietals.

According to the Mayo Clinic, "resveratrol might help prevent damage to blood vessels, reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (the "bad" cholesterol) and prevent blood clots." Resveratrol is a naturally-occurring fungicide that is found in grape skins and protects grapes from forming mold there are higher levels of resveratrol in thin-skinned grape varieties, such as pinot noir, since they are more vulnerable to being attacked by mold. Jim Bernau, president of Willamette Valley Vineyards, told Forbes that "in order to maximize the level of resveratrol in a wine, it&aposs necessary to minimize the wine&aposs contact with oxygen."

This isn&apost the first time that experts have cited the health benefits of pinot noir. A 2016 study found that drinking a small to medium amount of wine could reduce the risk of developing dementia later in life due to the antioxidants found in red wine. Another study published in 2015 found that those who drank dry white or dry red wine, including pinot noir, had improved levels of HDL cholesterol ("good cholesterol") compared to those who only drank water or other varieties of white wine.

Red wine has also been linked to improved gut health. A 2019 study conducted by Kings College London found that individuals who drank red wine had increased gut microbiota diversity compared to non-red wine drinkers. "While we have long known of the unexplained benefits of red wine on heart health, this study shows that moderate red wine consumption is associated with greater diversity and a healthier gut microbiota that partly explain its long debated beneficial effects on health," said Dr. Caroline Le Roy, who co-authored the study.


Disclaimer:

As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.

Comments

I am very happy to read your research. It is more informative and useful for wine lover

This blog does not reflect expert opinion and is not evidence-based.
99% of alcohol researchers have concluded that the epidemiological evidence for alcohol’s benefits on heart disease shows a very strong causal connection.
Furthermore, clinical trials (where alcohol has been tested like a pharmaceutical drug) have shown objective evidence of alcohol’s beneficial effects on the blood markers of heart disease.-
Tony Edwards author “The Alcohol Paradox”

My father, in southern France, Toulouse area, was drinking at least two glasses per meal. He lived until 97 years old. That is a fact…

Apart from the fact that every so often a new study disproves the previous one, as stated by another commentator, physical constitution, eating habits (drinking with meals), exercise/active life style, and genetics WILL ALWAYS play a role.

This discussion brings to mind an article which the Boston Globe ran many years ago. The title was something like, “Medical Studies Often Contradict Themselves, So Says the Last Study.” The article may be available for review in the Globe archives. As for the present blog, it does not, as I read it, report a study. It simply concludes , “it’s impossible to know.” I’m waiting for the next study.

Where did the “definition” of moderate drinking come from? The 1 per day for women and 2 per day for men, along with the 5-oz quantity, is spewed out on thousands of articles, websites, advice columns, etc. But I cannot find any research that backs this up. Did some committee just dream this up years ago and now everyone just adopts it, or is there a specific source of reliable scientific information? I would love to see any further information on this.

Yes, these figures were arrived at by a committee – the US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, which in 2015 recommended those intakes as part of “a healthy dietary pattern” i.e. moderate drinking can be good for your health.
Because the health benefits of alcohol are very rarely discussed in the mainstream media, I have collated the medical evidence in two books, enabling drinkers to make informed decisions about how much and what to drink for optimal health.

Think I consume more than 5oz each evening, but @ eighty It is probably too late to lament the fact. Heart seems fine. Will ask my physician about my liver next exam! Thanks for the warning.

After reading this article, tha conclusion seems to include, on the other hand, it might not be a myth. It’s absurd to sharply caution older men to drink only one glass of wine a day. What exactly are the risks of drinking one and a half glasses a day? Two glasses? Drinking that many but drinking none one or two days a week? I doubt that men living in Mediterranean Europe so limit themselves and that their longevity is shorter than that of American men.


Here’s What Experts Actually Think About the New Chilled Red Wine Trend

We geared up for summer by stocking our wine fridge with as many bottles of rosé as we could fit, but these days it seems like we’ve been hearing more about a new wine trend: chilled red wine. Now, we’ve always stuck to drinking red wine at room temperature (sangria not included), but we’re intrigued at the thought of sipping on something a little more interesting than pink wine now that the weather is scorching hot, so we reached out to several wine experts to get their opinion on the emerging chilled red wine trend.

“I’ve been drinking chilled reds for some time now, so I’m happy to hear it’s becoming a trend!” shared Katie Nelson, senior director of winemaking for Columbia Crest. “It’s a great opportunity for people to enjoy wine on even more occasions. Anything with a lighter body, higher acidity and no oak is nice chilled &mdash varietals like Pinot Noir and Gamay. They’re great to pair with charcuterie boards and appetizers or a hearty salad like arugula with flank steak, parmesan cheese and cracked pepper.”

“For a lot of light, lively red wines, the perfect temperature is definitely chilled,” agrees Sarah Tracey, sommelier and founder of The Lush Life. However, it’s important to note that there’s a difference between chilled and cold.

“Red wine is supposed to be served ‘at room temperature,’ however what a lot of people don’t realize is that ‘rule’ was created back when we were enjoying wines in castles and rock chateaux, making ‘room temp’ cooler than our typical houses nowadays,” shared Kelsey Chesterfield, marketing manager of Gold Medal Wine Club.

She recommends setting your wine fridge to 58 degrees for wines you’d want to drink chilled.

Which red wines should you try chilled?

If you’re interested in trying the chilled wine trend, Tracey recommends “Wines made from thinner-skinned red grapes that have a bright, juicy profile with plenty of crunchy red fruit flavors (think: Pinot Noir, Gamay aka the grape of Beaujolais, Alpine red grapes like Trousseau and Poulsard, and Sicilian wines like Frappato).”

Red wines you shouldn’t drink chilled

However, not all red wines benefit from a brief rest in the refrigerator.

According to Tracey, you should never chill “Full-bodied red wines that have a high level of tannin (like Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Nebbiolo) &mdash dropping the temperature on these could make the wines taste astringent and even metallic!”

Chesterfield also warns that “when a wine is too cold, a lot of the fruit expression and complexity of the wine gets masked.” She says that heavier wines like Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, Syrah and Malbec are better served at 65 degrees &mdash a more modern-day room temperature. “Since these full-bodied reds typically have more complexity, a slightly warmer temperature will help bring those qualities out in the wine,” she explained.

Interested in trying some chilled red wines? Here are a few bottles recommended by the experts we spoke with.

1. Erath 2017 Oregon Pinot Noir

Nelson says of this wine: “Luscious loganberry, Bing cherry and rising bread dough waft forth with a pleasing hint of caramel and aromatic sandalwood. The smooth, weighty palate offers cherry candy, pomegranate, candied orange peel and a touch of anise concluding with a nice uplifting finish.” Sounds like a winner to us!

2. Coto de Gomariz, Ribeiro La Flor y La Abeja Sousón

“This fresh Atlantic wine is light in body with notes of inky iron, hibiscus flower, deep fruit, and spice, and it comes correct with a nice tannic backbone. She tastes delicious with a chill!” exclaims Erin Rickenbaker, wine director at Bellota in San Francisco.

3. Montsecano Refugio Pinot Noir 2018

Doreen Winkler, natural wine sommelier and founder of Orange Glou, recommends this bottle of natural wine &mdash a light and fruit-forward Pinot Noir &mdash as one you should try chilled.

4. Wölffer Estate Finca Red from Argentina

Roman Roth, the winemaker at Wölffer Estate Vineyard, recommends this bottle for chilling. It’s “a Malbec based red wine that is made even more versatile by the addition of 11% of a white wine, Torrontes.”

Before you go, check out our gallery of summer cocktails below:

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Prediabetes and a Glass of Wine a Day

According to the study, which was reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2015, people with diabetes who drank one glass of red or white wine a night (as opposed to a glass of mineral water) saw health benefits and an improvement in measurements associated with diabetes. Red wine drinkers, especially, saw significant improvements in both diabetes-related issues and heart health. (White wine drinkers saw an improvement in their triglyceride levels, but red wine drinkers saw an improvement in cholesterol and lipid, or fat, metabolism.) The wine drinkers overall saw that, after two years of drinking one glass of wine a night, they had fewer signs of metabolic syndrome, which can include high blood sugar and hypertension.

This study only focused on people with diabetes, and many other studies show the benefits of wine drinking on people without the disease, but there is little conclusive evidence on the effects of wine drinking on people with prediabetes. However, the health goal for those with prediabetes is to prevent the development of full-fledged diabetes. This means that efforts should focus on lowering blood glucose levels and regulating overall health to ensure proper insulin levels and pancreatic health. If regular wine consumption (especially red wine) works for those with a more severe form of the disease, it is possible that it can help those with prediabetes stave off the development of diabetes.


Is red wine good for you?

Red wine contains powerful antioxidants, and many sources claim that drinking it has health benefits. What does the research say?

Researchers have studied wine — especially red wine — extensively for its possible health benefits.

This article looks at the evidence behind the benefits of red wine, along with health warnings, and discusses whether people should drink it.

Share on Pinterest Moderate consumption of red wine may have benefits for cardiovascular health.

Red wine has been part of social, religious, and cultural events for hundreds of years. Medieval monasteries believed that their monks lived longer partly because of their regular, moderate drinking of wine.

In recent years, science has indicated that there could be truth in these claims.

According to a 2018 study , although notably there are no official recommendations around these benefits, drinking red wine in moderation has positive links with:

Red wine may get its health benefits from its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and lipid-regulating effects.

Red wine — made from crushed dark grapes — is a relatively rich source of resveratrol, a natural antioxidant in the skin of grapes.

Antioxidants reduce oxidative stress in the body. Oxidative stress has clear links with many diseases, including cancers and heart disease.

There are many healthful, antioxidant-rich foods, including fruits, nuts, and vegetables.

Whole grapes and berries are better sources of resveratrol than red wine, and because of the health risks linked with drinking alcohol, getting antioxidants from foods is likely to be more healthful than drinking wine.

People may need to drink a lot of red wine to get enough resveratrol to have an effect, which could do more harm than good.

That said, when choosing between alcoholic beverages, red wine may be more healthful than some others.

The following sections take a closer look at the possible health benefits of red wine.

Many studies through the years have shown a positive link between moderate red wine drinking and good heart health.

Recently, a 2019 review reported that drinking red wine is linked with a lower risk of coronary heart disease, which is a leading cause of disease and death in the United States.

The authors concluded that red wine might have cardioprotective effects.

However, the American Heart Association (AHA) say that such studies do not show cause-and-effect relationships. Other factors may play a role. For example, people who drink red wine in moderation may also follow a more healthful lifestyle or a Mediterranean diet.

They also point out that excess alcohol can directly harm the heart. To stay safe, people should stay within official CDC guidelines from the Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC) , which define moderate drinking as:

One glass of wine is 5 ounces (oz) of 12% alcohol by volume.

A 2018 study reports that polyphenols from red wine and grapes can improve the gut microbiota, contributing to a healthy gut.

According to 2012 research , red wine compounds may also act as prebiotics, which are compounds that boost healthy gut bacteria.

In 2016, researchers suggested red wine could reduce the risk of heart disease through its effects on the gut microbiome.

However, the research is limited, and doctors need more evidence before understanding the true effects of red wine on gut health.

One 2015 study has shown that drinking a glass of red wine with dinner “modestly decreases cardiometabolic risk” in people with type 2 diabetes and that a moderate intake of red wine is usually safe.

The scientists believe that the ethanol in wine plays a crucial role in metabolizing glucose and that the nonalcoholic ingredients may also contribute. They call for more research to confirm the findings.

Anyone with diabetes should check with their doctor before drinking alcohol.

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), resveratrol — an antioxidant in red wine — may reduce blood pressure and increase levels of HDL (good) cholesterol.

In 2006 , scientists reported that red wine compounds called procyanidins help keep the blood vessels healthy.

Many people find an alcoholic drink relaxes them, but results published in 2012 indicate that nonalcoholic red wine, too, can reduce blood pressure. This could be a more healthful option.

It is important, however, to note that drinking too much alcohol can cause high blood pressure and arrhythmia, or an irregular heart rhythm.

A 2015 review reports that resveratrol may help protect against secondary brain damage after a stroke or central nervous system injury. This is due to its positive effects on inflammation, oxidative stress, and cell death.

However, these studies show the effects of resveratrol rather than red wine itself.

Resveratrol may also help prevent vision loss by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, according to 2016 research .

Many forms of age-related eye conditions that cause vision loss involve these factors, including:

Some research says that drinking red wine in moderation could reduce the risk of certain cancers.

However, the National Cancer Institute say there is strong evidence that drinking alcohol can cause certain cancers, especially drinking heavily over time.

This is partly because it creates toxins in the body, damages body tissues, and creates oxidation. This means that the potential adverse effects of alcohol may outweigh any benefit from resveratrol.

The National Cancer Institute links alcohol use with a range of cancers, including mouth, throat, liver, breast, and colon cancer.

For most people, enjoying red wine in moderation is safe, but it is important to keep in mind that drinking alcohol in excess is harmful.

Some studies, however, link moderate red wine intake with reduced risk or better outcomes in cancer. The following sections look at specific studies into red wine and particular types of cancer.

Breast cancer

Alcohol increases estrogen in the body, a chemical that encourages the growth of cancer cells.

However, a 2012 study says that the aromatase inhibitors (AIs) in red wine — and to a lesser extent, white wine — may reduce estrogen levels and increase testosterone in females approaching menopause.

The researchers say that this may be why red wine is less associated with increased breast cancer risk than other types of alcohol.

Lung cancer

A 2017 review reports that resveratrol has protective effects against cancer in both human and laboratory studies. The mechanisms include preventing cell proliferation and tumor growth, inducing cell death in cancer cells, and inhibiting metastasis.

However, again, these effects are for resveratrol rather than red wine itself.

Prostate cancer

A study from 2019 reports that males who drank alcohol had a slightly lower risk of lethal prostate cancer, and that red wine had links with a lower risk of progression to lethal disease.

The authors say that these results mean moderate alcohol consumption is safe for people with prostate cancer.

According to a 2018 report , researchers have found an increased risk of dementia in people who abstained from drinking wine.

The authors say that this may be because of the neuroprotective effects of polyphenols and other compounds in wine that can reduce inflammation and alter the lipid profile in the body.

A 2013 study on 5,505 people over 7 years showed that those who drank between 2–7 glasses of wine each week had lower levels of depression.

They also reported that people who drank heavily were more at risk for depression.

Alcohol is a common cause of liver disease. However, a moderate intake of red wine has links with good liver health in some contexts.

According to a 2018 study , modest alcohol intake — particularly wine — is linked with lower liver fibrosis in people with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

That said, the impact of red wine on liver health is complicated. Although it provides antioxidants and reduces oxidative stress, drinking can also increase uric acid and triglycerides, which damages the liver.

Researchers need to complete more studies to work out the complex effects of moderate red wine intake on liver health.

That said, people who currently have liver disease should avoid alcohol altogether.

Drinking red wine in moderation may reduce the risk of some chronic disease, as discussed above, so it follows that it may help people to live longer.

Indeed, one popularized 2000 study reported that “Men aged 45–64 at entry drinking about 5 drinks per day have a longer life expectancy than occasional and heavy drinkers.”

However, this is likely due to confounding factors, such as diet, as discussed in a 2018 review . For instance, red wine is a common addition to the Mediterranean diet, an eating pattern that has established links with good health and long life.

Resveratrol appears to underlie many of the health benefits of red wine.

Red wine contains more resveratrol than white wine as it is fermented with the skins, while white wine is not. Most of the resveratrol in grapes is in the seeds and skin.

Nonalcoholic red wines may also include resveratrol.

Wine consumption may have some health benefits, but drinking too much of any type of alcohol can increase health risks.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provide guidance on the health risks of drinking too much alcohol.

They report that excessive alcohol use led to around 88,000 deaths in the United States between 2006–2010, shortening the lives of those who died by an average of 30 years.

Further, they state that 1 in 10 deaths among adults aged 20–64 years were related to excessive drinking.

The risks of excessive alcohol use include:

  • heart problems
  • stroke
  • fatty liver disease
  • liver damage conditions
  • certain cancers

People may also experience alcohol poisoning and alcohol use disorder. Heavy drinking is particularly harmful to health.

For most people, enjoying a glass or two of red wine each day can be part of a healthful diet.

The key is moderation. Regardless of the possible health benefits, drinking excess alcohol can do more harm than good.

Despite any possible benefits, official U.S. guidelines do not recommend that people start drinking or drink more for any reason.

Is moderate drinking good for you? Read more here.

Ultimately, many of the benefits linked to red wine are due to the beneficial properties of resveratrol. Eating grapes and berries may, therefore, be a more healthful option.

Drinking red wine in moderation may have certain health benefits, including boosting heart, gut, and brain health. This is because it contains compounds with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and lipid-improving effects.

Drinking alcohol is not safe for everyone, and drinking more than a moderate amount can cause serious health problems.


Red Wine Chocolate Cake

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 3 hours
  • Cook Time: 33 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 33 minutes
  • Yield: 12 - 14 Slices 1 x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Moist red wine chocolate cake recipe filled with raspberry buttercream, frosted with chocolate frosting and covered in red wine chocolate ganache!

Ingredients

RED WINE CHOCOLATE CAKE

  • 2 cups ( 260g ) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups ( 414g ) sugar
  • 3/4 cup ( 85g ) Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk
  • 1 cup (240ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup (240ml) sweet red wine

RASPBERRY BUTTERCREAM

  • 6 oz raspberries (add 5-6 tbsp of strained puree)
  • 3/4 cup (112g) salted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (95g) shortening
  • 6 cups (690g) powdered sugar

CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM

  • 3/4 cup (112g) salted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (95g) shortening
  • 5 cups ( 575g ) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (57g) Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 – 6 tbsp (75-90ml) milk or water

CHOCOLATE GANACHE

  • 6 oz (1 cup | 169g) semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • Sprinkles

Instructions

Notes

*the shortening can be replaced with butter, if preferred.

Keywords: red wine dessert recipe, chocolate cake recipe, valentines day dessert recipe, raspberry buttercream recipe


9 Signs You May Be Intolerant To Red Wine

If you can happily sip a glass of merlot all evening long without experiencing any unpleasant side effects, then you're likely in the clear as far as an allergy to red wine goes. But unfortunately for some folks, this delightful beverage can leave them feeling a little worse for wear — and sometimes even in danger.

Unpleasant side effects may be due to an allergy to alcohol in general, which can lead to some of the scarier symptoms, while others may stem from an intolerance to the components of wine specifically. And they can all cause different reactions. "In general an allergy causes an immune response whereas a sensitivity may cause a digestive response," triple board-certified physician Monisha Bhanote, MD, FASCP, FCAP, tells Bustle. Allergic reactions include breaking out in hives, coughing, and asthma-like symptoms, which is why a "true allergy can be life threatening," Dr. Bhanote says.

If you experience allergic symptoms after drinking wine, let your doctor know. "People are genetically predisposed to a real allergy and only an allergist can tell for sure," Dr. Nancy Simpkins tells Bustle. But as for sensitivities or intolerances, you may be able to spot those yourself.

"The sensitivity is actually more common than having an allergy," Dr. Bhanote says. "However, you can also have digestive symptoms with the allergy and you can also have runny nose and hives as a sensitivity symptoms. There is much overlap with the presentation of symptoms but the actually mechanism of action is different." With that in mind, read on for some signs and symptoms that mean red wine doesn't agree with you, according to experts.


The Wine Allergy You Don&rsquot Know You Have

Brace yourself, wine lovers this may be the worst news yet. A recent study shows that a surprising number of drinkers are allergic to vino&mdashwithout even knowing it. And your health isn&rsquot happy about it.

Researchers from Johannes Gutenberg University questioned hundreds of people living in a wine-producing region of western Germany. Of the roughly 950 respondents, nearly 25% of the group reported at least mild signs of alcohol intolerance&mdashsigns that are often chalked up to other issues. The most common symptoms included flushed skin, itching, nasal congestion, and increased heart rate. And here&rsquos the worst part: Women were almost twice as likely as men to suffer from wine allergies, says study author Heinz Decker, PhD, who led the research effort.

Wine contains proteins from grapes, bacteria, and yeast, as well as sulfites and other organic compounds. Any one of those components&mdashwhich are also found in beer and hard liquor&mdashcan cause an allergic-like reaction, says Decker. But red wine is the most likely to cause the unhappy allergic reaction: A specific type of protein allergen called &ldquoLTP&rdquo is found in the skins of the grapes (white wine is fermented without the grape skins).

So are you allergic to wine? If your typical glass of wine comes with flushing, nasal congestion, and diarrhea, or more severe reactions like vomiting, shortness of breath, or swelling of the lips, mouth, or throat, the answer could be yes.

On the other hand, you could be suffering from a more-general type of alcohol intolerance. Alcohol causes blood vessels to widen and expand, which can cause skin flushing in some people. So if that&rsquos the only symptom you experience, you may be reacting to the ethanol present in any alcoholic drink, not just wine.

What should you do? If your symptoms are mild and you don&rsquot mind them&mdashwho doesn&rsquot like a rosy glow now and then?&mdashyou don&rsquot have to do anything. If it&rsquos red wine triggering the symptoms of an alcohol allergy, try switching to white. The same goes for beer and liquor: If you don&rsquot react well to one type, try another. And of course, if your symptoms are more than mild, you may just have to leave your favorite bottle on the shelf.


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