Wine has been a favorite drink for many millennia, attracting individuals of different races, ethnicities and cultures to its sweet and earthy tastes. For thousands of years, many societies have used wine as a central theme in cultural traditions and practices, from food pairings to ceremonial use. Today it remains as popular as ever, with hundreds of varieties and thousands of brands. However, despite its long history and much-loved taste, wine does not always work out the same for everyone, a fact wine club members are well aware of.

red and white grapes

As there are many different types of wine, there are also many ingredients that vary between wines. Wine club of the month members have experience concerning the similarities in ingredients between wines. Histamines, for example, are common in most wines but are present in higher doses in red wine than white. Essentially, histamines are organic compounds that trigger an inflammatory response when they enter the body. This response is meant to ward off infection, but sometimes the immune system mistakes histamines in wine as pathogens, leading to inflammation. In most people, histamines cause sneezing, itchy eyes and nasal congestion. Unfortunately, for individuals sensitive to histamines, their presence in wine can be very unpleasant.

Some people make that claim that alcohol worsens their allergies. In the case of wine, this can actually be true. Histamines are produced naturally in the yeasts and bacteria used to break down the ingredients in many beers and wines and are similar to sulfites, another common wine ingredient. For individuals fighting allergies or cold symptoms, drinking a glass of wine can often hurt, not help. This is especially true in women, who seem to be more affected by the histamines in wine.

Despite being a popular drink around the world, the time isn’t always right for wine. Regardless of its pleasing taste, the histamines that occur naturally can exacerbate allergy symptoms and cause some unpleasant side effects. During periods in the spring and fall, it might be wise to hold off on wine drinking until the pollen counts drop. If you are interested in learning more about the fascinating details surrounding the production and consumption of one of the world’s best loved drinks, a wine club membership might be a good choice for you.