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Resource Guide to Alcohol Allergy and Intolerance

Alcohol AllergyAlcohol allergy, or intolerance, is a hypersensitivity to alcohol that can result in a number of symptoms, from the skin becoming flushed to getting horribly sick when alcohol is ingested. A study conducted by researchers at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz found that among 950 people surveyed with a questionnaire, roughly 25 percent of the group reported that they experienced mild symptoms of alcohol intolerance. Some of the symptoms experienced were itchy, flushed skin, a faster heartbeat, and diarrhea. If you regularly experience those symptoms as well as losing your breath, vomiting, or swelling of the lips and throat, you could very well have an allergy to alcohol.

However, if you only experience mild symptoms occasionally, you likely aren’t experiencing an allergic reaction. Rather, your body just might not react well to certain types of alcohol. Switching from red to white wine or cutting out beer from your alcohol intake may make a big difference. Just be sure to realize when your symptoms are unusual or severe: You’ll want to see your doctor as soon as possible. Having an intolerance to alcohol happens when the body lacks the necessary enzymes needed to properly break down toxins that are in alcohol. This usually happens because of genetics. There are a number of things found in alcoholic beverages that can cause an allergic reaction to the alcohol, including chemicals or grains, sulfites or preservatives, and histamine, which can be a byproduct of fermentation or brewing of alcohol. A reaction can also occur if you have an allergy to corn or wheat.

  • Understand Alcohol Intolerance: The writer of this article focuses on what other medical conditions alcohol intolerance can cause and how to deal with having an alcohol allergy.
  • Alcohol Intolerance: This article has a great in-depth analysis of what alcohol intolerance really is.
  • Alcohol Allergies: This article goes over the dangers of untreated alcohol allergies. It also touches on how to treat them effectively as well as how to differentiate between minor and major symptoms.
  • Alcohol Allergies: This article clears up a few myths about alcohol allergy symptoms and discusses why this allergy can be hard to detect. It also discusses how there are already alcohol levels present in our body that might make the allergy hard to detect accurately.
  • Are You Allergic to Booze? Men’s Health magazine looks at the symptoms of alcohol intolerance and what people can do about them.
  • Alcohol Allergies Can Cause Sneezing, Flushing, Headache: An ABC News report looks at the effects of alcohol allergies on those who suffer from them.
  • You Could Be Allergic to Alcohol: In this Huffington Post article, the writer talks about the confusion between hangovers and alcohol allergies as well as how to tell the difference.
  • Do You Have a Food Intolerance? The BBC looks at diagnosing sensitivities to various foods, including alcohol.
  • Am I Allergic to Alcohol? Columbia Health’s “Go Ask Alice” feature tackles a question about getting sick after drinking small amounts of alcohol.
  • Is Alcoholism an Allergy? The theory that alcoholism is caused by an alcohol allergy has been floated, but no scientific evidence has been found to back up this claim..
  • An Allergic Reaction to Alcohol? This article was written by a licensed doctor, and she answers a common question regarding drinking alcohol and experiencing itchy, hot skin afterward. She covers some of the causes of alcohol allergies and how different beverages can affect your reactions as well.

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