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Why Do Some Beers Give Me a Headache?

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blindeyedbetty
beers 189 º places 4 º 12:30 Sat 1/23/2010

I have no idea and was hoping someone could tell me. Iím not sure what to try to avoid so I donít have godawful headaches after drinking beer. Is it the different sugars? Is it the combination of beers? Last night, I had a Brooklyn Lager, a Troegenator and a Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout. I went to bed early and woke up at 3 am with a pounding headache. Youíd think I went to a kegger and was doing a beer bong upside down. Yuengling Lager also gives me a huge headache.

Disclaimer: When explaining this to me, would you please keep the explanation simple? I donít brew and am not a science nut, so a grade-school level explanation would be very much appreciated. But, I would very much like to know whatís going on with this.

 
smith4498
premium
beers 3270 º places 20 º 12:35 Sat 1/23/2010

Itís probably dehydration. This happens to me sometimes even after just a few beers if I donít drink any water before going to bed. It seems to happen to me with Heinekin no matter what (I havenít had one in years though).

 
ilovedarkbeer
beers 2479 º places 85 º 12:37 Sat 1/23/2010

Possibilities:

Allergens

Dehydration

Gluten Intolerance

Caffeine Issues

 
Beerona97
beers 2397 º places 114 º 12:40 Sat 1/23/2010

I agree with previous responses, either dehydration or allergies (hopefully not). If you drink 2 pints of water before you go to sleep, or a steady amoutn as you drink the beer, you probably wonít get a headache, but you may wake up to take a piss instead.

 
DaSilky1
beers 2606 º places 66 º 12:40 Sat 1/23/2010

It has more to do with you and less to do with which beers youíre drinking.

 
DerWeg
beers 1564 º places 45 º 12:41 Sat 1/23/2010

Iíve been told over and over "alcohol doesnít give you a headache, itís dehydration." First step is to drink one for one.

Iím pretty sure certain adjuncts & preservatives in badly-made beer once gave me a fuzzy head. Now Iím pretty sure there are character-defining íimpuritiesí even in certain well-made beer like Rochefort, Hardyís and Rodenbach - íimpuritiesí that create good flavor, but I have a limited tolerance.

ONLY certain beers give me a headache, for example there is no way I can drink two Rocheforts. Two of any other Trappist is no problem!

See, those Reinheitsgebot Krauts were right in some sense about ípureí beer (keep in mind the context that beer was a staple of the German diet much like bread - not the type of wax-dipped extravagance we usually prattle on about on Ratebeer.)

 
blindeyedbetty
beers 189 º places 4 º 12:43 Sat 1/23/2010

Originally posted by ilovedarkbeer
Possibilities:

Allergens

Dehydration

Gluten Intolerance

Caffeine Issues


Could you expound on these?
I donít think itís dehydration as I drink tons of water, but maybe I need more depending on the type of beer Iím drinking?
I donít think I have gluten intolerance as Iíd imagine that Iíd have problems in day-to-day nutrition as well, wouldnít I?
I definitely have caffeine issues. I try not to drink caffeine after about noon because I sleep like crap anyway, regardless, but caffeine makes it much worse. Am I the DB of the day when I say that I didnít realize beer had caffeine in it? I assumed a coffee flavored beer might, but hadnít considered whether others would.

 
notalush
beers 5393 º places 382 º 12:49 Sat 1/23/2010

It could be fusel oils. Technically, there shouldnít be enough left in beer after the fermentation process, but sometimes...

 
DerWeg
beers 1564 º places 45 º 12:55 Sat 1/23/2010

Regarding dehydration, it is supposed to help water absorption if you drink it with a bit of added lemon. (Donít drink a ton of fluids with meals or immediately beforehand.)

Anyone can be experiencing accumulated toxins eg. in the liver. Drink milk thistle extract in some water, it helps the liver get clean.

I bet you can tolerate ílow-toleranceí beers a bit better if you try these steps, watch diet, manage stress and keep active enough (general common sense stuff LOL). Its the whole-person approach that often works.

Hey you might feel better too - but in any case good luck finding what suits you.

 
blindeyedbetty
beers 189 º places 4 º 13:01 Sat 1/23/2010

Originally posted by notalush
It could be fusel oils. Technically, there shouldnít be enough left in beer after the fermentation process, but sometimes...


What are these?

 
j12601
premium
beers 8000 º places 285 º 13:41 Sat 1/23/2010

Congeners.
In simple...
Basically stuff thatís made during fermentation. By-products if you will.

Back in my days as a wine geek, some reds gave me terrible morning afters, some didnít. Same with liquor...even in the same category (id est gin).

Easiest thing Iíve found is to simply ingest a substantially large enough amount of water to make sure as to either flush your system, or to keep you fully hydrated. Also, make sure youíre stocked up on B-vitamins. I take a B-complex daily, and Iíd guess from that and the almost compulsive drinking of water when I go to tastings, I havenít had a hangover in a couple years, much to the chagrin of those with whom I drink.