3. Red wine
Forget the health benefits. If red wine causes headaches, you might as well skip it.
Alcoholic beverages are notorious for increasing blood flow to the brain – and red wine is no different. The average wine has an alcohol by volume (ABV) of 12.5 to 14.5%, which is 2 to 3 times than what beer has. Alcohol consumption also leads to dehydration, another headache trigger. You could also get a hangover from drinking red wine, which is often accompanied with severe headache. According to Dr. Robert Daroff, a neurology professor and former president of the American Headache Society, people who have migraines are at a greater risk since they experience worse hangovers.
Besides alcohol, red wine contains tyramine and tannins. Tyramine causes headaches by spiking your blood pressure. Tannins trigger the release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that causes headaches when elevated. Moreover, red wine has natural sulfites created through the fermentation of grapes. However, some wine makers use synthetic sulfites to prolong the shelf life and improve the taste of their products. Sulfites are believed to cause headaches in people who are allergic or sensitive to them.
As a general rule, you must avoid wines with the highest amounts of tyramine or tannins. Examples of which are Rieslings, Chiantis, Cabernet Sauvignons, and Shiraz. Also, check wine labels and choose bottles with “no sulfites added”.