What ingredients in wine cause allergies
The type of yeast used to ferment numerous alcoholic beverages is a one-celled fungus commonly known as brewer's yeast. The scientific name is Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and it's the same yeast that is used to make bread rise. Allergies toSaccharomyces cerevisiae have been well-documented in medical literature and are most likely to happen in people who own mold allergies.
To date, there has been extremely little research done on yeast allergies and distilled spirits. If you are allergic to yeast and would love to make these beverages part of your diet, you should discuss further allergy testing with your allergist.
It's significant to note that brewer's yeast isn't the same organism as Candida albicans
If you are concerned about consuming gluten-based alcohol, you can attempt a potato-based or grape-based vodka or a gluten-free whiskey made from sorghum (a gluten-free grain).
Antihistamines love Allegra (fexofenadine) and Zyrtec (cetirizine) may assist alleviate histamine intolerance symptoms.
However, the best treatment is the avoidance of histamine in the foods we consume, including alcohol.
If your allergist has advised you that you are at risk of anaphylaxis due to a sulfite allergy, you will need to avoid wine. You would also need to carry an EpiPen to self-inject yourself with epinephrine (adrenaline) if the event of an emergency.
Brewer's yeast is used in every fermented alcoholic beverages—beer, wine, hard cider, sake, kvass, and other similar beverages—so individuals with yeast allergies should avoid these.
The same may not be true for distilled liquor.
Reactions to alcohol are not unusual, although they are not common either. The symptoms you describe can arise from several diverse sources, not every of which are allergic. I own listed some possible explanations under. After each possibility, I've included in italics some questions that you can enquire yourself to see if that explanation might apply to you.
One point about safety before we start: I cannot tell with confidence that this reaction could not worsen suddenly and turn into anaphylaxis (a reaction involving several parts of the body that can be life-threatening).
If you own had this problem for most of your adult life and it hasn't worsened, then you can probably relax and experiment a bit with it. However, if this is a new problem and you've only had the symptoms a few times, then I would advise you NOT to experiment and see an allergist instead.
With that in mind, here are some causes to consider:
- People taking certain medications (niacin, Protopic or Elidel creams for eczema, metronidazole, disulfiram) can flush severely when they drink alcohol. Review every the medications you take, including anything herbal or over-the-counter. Did you start taking any new medications at the same time the problem started?
- People can react to the sulfites in wine, although a more common reaction is wheezing and a stuffy or runny nose. Sulfites are used to prevent discoloration.
Other foods items that contain sulfites include dried fruit that has not browned, vinegar, some shrimp, commercially prepared potato products, sauerkraut, and pickles. Do any of these foods cause symptoms? If you purchase wine that is labeled sulfite-free, do you still get symptoms?
- People who lack the natural chemical alcohol dehydrogenase, which breaks below alcohol, can own severe flushing when they drink alcohol. Other symptoms include getting intoxicated extremely easily and developing nausea or vomiting with drinking. Do any family members own similar problems with alcohol? Are you of Asian descent? (The deficiency is more common in Asian populations.)
- Wine, more than other alcoholic drinks, contains natural histamine-like chemicals that can cause flushing and hives in susceptible people.
Do only certain alcoholic beverages own this effect on you, such as red wine or beer but not vodka or gin? Are you prone to getting hives or flushing from other causes?
- A person can be allergic to some component of the beverage — the fruit itself, the hops (in beer), or something else. Do you own any pollen allergies? If so, then you may be reacting to some plant component in the beverage. Can you eat grapes and various grains without symptoms?
- People with the common skin condition rosacea can flush severely when they drink.
Do you own extremely red cheeks, while the skin around your eyes is pale? Do you break out frequently, especially on the lower face? Do you blush easily? If so, enquire your primary-care provider about rosacea, as most PCPs are extremely familiar with this common skin ailment.
- People can be allergic to hidden allergens in wines and beers. Fish products, for instance, are used in some wines as clarifying agents. This is a rather unusual cause, but do you own any other known food allergies?
- Finally, there are some rare but serious diseases that can cause flushing from a variety of causes. However, if your symptoms happen only after drinking alcohol, then you can probably cross this off the list of possibilities.
more than other alcoholic drinks, contains natural histamine-like chemicals that can cause flushing and hives in susceptible people. Do only certain alcoholic beverages own this effect on you, such as red wine or beer but not vodka or gin?
Are you prone to getting hives or flushing from other causes?
Do any family members own similar problems with alcohol? Are you of Asian descent? (The deficiency is more common in Asian populations.)
Sulfites are used to prevent discoloration. Other foods items that contain sulfites include dried fruit that has not browned, vinegar, some shrimp, commercially prepared potato products, sauerkraut, and pickles. Do any of these foods cause symptoms?
If you purchase wine that is labeled sulfite-free, do you still get symptoms?
Fish products, for instance, are used in some wines as clarifying agents. This is a rather unusual cause, but do you own any other known food allergies?
Research published in December in the Journal of the American Heart Association gives a clearer picture of how excessive drinking can weaken the heart.
Gluten, the protein that triggers celiac disease reactions, is found in three grains: wheat, barley, and rye. Malted barley is used to make beer and some other bottled drinks. Some beer also contains wheat (either in addition to or instead of barley).
Therefore, if you own celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity, you'll need to steer clear of conventional beer. If you own a wheat allergy, you can drink beer that's made with barley but not wheat.
It gets more complicated when it comes to alcoholic beverages that are made with gluten grains but distilled.
Common distilled beverages that are sometimes made from wheat, rye, and barley include gin, vodka, and whiskey (including bourbon).
The American Dietetic Association (ADA) considers distilled spirits safe for people with celiac disease. According to celiac disease dietary guidelines, unless flavorings are added after the distillation process, distilled alcoholic beverages are gluten-free.
However, this is a controversial topic, since numerous people with celiac or gluten sensitivity do report reactions to alcoholic beverages distilled from gluten grains.
Meanwhile, little research has been done on the effects of distilled spirits made from wheat on people with wheat allergy, but the European Food Safety Authority considers them safe.
Since the gluten-free commercial market has grown so much, numerous manufacturers make alcoholic beverages that are labeled as gluten-free. For example, there are a number of beers made entirely from gluten-free ingredients.
Common alcoholic beverages that are naturally gluten-free include wine and most brandies. Do read brandy labels carefully, though, since some flavored brandies include sweeteners and additives that may contain gluten.
Most liqueurs and some wine coolers are gluten-free as well.
With any of these, it's wise to check labels or manufacturer websites since there are exceptions and some do include possible gluten-containing additives.
A group of sulfur-containing compounds known as sulfites occurs naturally in wine and beer, and they assist inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in those beverages. In addition, vintners sometimes add more sulfites to wines because they act as preservatives. However, in susceptible individuals, sulfites can trigger asthma attacks or a serious, all-body allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis.
For most sulfite-sensitive people, extremely low amounts of sulfites do not trigger an asthma attack, but as amounts go up, so do the chances of experiencing a reaction.
U.S. labeling laws require any food with sulfite concentrations greater than 10 parts per million (ppm) to be listed on the label using the term "contains sulfites."
There is no such thing as a truly sulfite-free wine. While organic wines are not allowed by law to include additional sulfites, some do include enough natural sulfites to be problematic for some asthmatic individuals.
Many foods, including aged cheese and red wine, are high in histamine.
This is the same chemical involved in a number of allergic reactions in the body. An allergic reaction to high-histamine foods actually could indicate a possible histamine intolerance.
Your body has two enzymes that are supposed to break below histamine, but sometimes these enzymes don't work as well as they should. When this occurs, it can cause a variety of histamine intolerance symptoms, including the so-called "red wine headache." There also is some evidence of histamine being associated with migraines. While red wine is especially high in histamines, every alcoholic beverages own high levels of histamine.
Other histamine-rich foods to avoid include cured meats, spinach, tomatoes, and fermented foods love kefir.