Scientists say mystery of how red wine headaches occur may be solved

Researchers home in on phenolic flavonoids as culprit for headaches that come on soon after a glass or two

For the Greek philosopher Celsus, wine was the answer to endless ailments, from fatigue and fever to coughs and constipation. But despite its convenient healing powers, the grape, he conceded to his faithful readers, could bring about the odd headache.

Now, researchers believe they have hit on the reason why wine – red wine, in particular – causes such swift and undeserved headaches. When the liver breaks down a particular ingredient, it produces a substance that has the same effects as a drug used to make alcoholics feel dreadful if they drink.

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