Why Do Some Beers Give Me a Headache?

Reads 72956 • Replies 35 • Started Saturday, January 23, 2010 12:30:23 PM CT

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

I have no idea and was hoping someone could tell me. I’m not sure what to try to avoid so I don’t 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. You’d 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 don’t 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 what’s going on with this.

 
smith4498
beers 3670 º places 20 º 12:35 Sat 1/23/2010

It’s probably dehydration. This happens to me sometimes even after just a few beers if I don’t drink any water before going to bed. It seems to happen to me with Heinekin no matter what (I haven’t had one in years though).

 
ilovedarkbeer
beers 2748 º places 115 º 12:37 Sat 1/23/2010

Possibilities:

Allergens

Dehydration

Gluten Intolerance

Caffeine Issues

 
Beerona97
beers 2399 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 won’t 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 you’re drinking.

 
DerWeg
beers 1702 º places 45 º 12:41 Sat 1/23/2010

I’ve been told over and over "alcohol doesn’t give you a headache, it’s dehydration." First step is to drink one for one.

I’m pretty sure certain adjuncts & preservatives in badly-made beer once gave me a fuzzy head. Now I’m pretty sure there are character-defining ’impurities’ even in certain well-made beer like Rochefort, Hardy’s and Rodenbach - ’impurities’ 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 ’pure’ 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 don’t think it’s dehydration as I drink tons of water, but maybe I need more depending on the type of beer I’m drinking?
I don’t think I have gluten intolerance as I’d imagine that I’d have problems in day-to-day nutrition as well, wouldn’t 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 didn’t realize beer had caffeine in it? I assumed a coffee flavored beer might, but hadn’t considered whether others would.

 
notalush
beers 5910 º places 407 º 12:49 Sat 1/23/2010

It could be fusel oils. Technically, there shouldn’t be enough left in beer after the fermentation process, but sometimes...

 
DerWeg
beers 1702 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. (Don’t 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 ’low-tolerance’ 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 shouldn’t be enough left in beer after the fermentation process, but sometimes...


What are these?

 
j12601
beers 13027 º places 575 º 13:41 Sat 1/23/2010

Congeners.
In simple...
Basically stuff that’s made during fermentation. By-products if you will.

Back in my days as a wine geek, some reds gave me terrible morning afters, some didn’t. Same with liquor...even in the same category (id est gin).

Easiest thing I’ve 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 you’re stocked up on B-vitamins. I take a B-complex daily, and I’d guess from that and the almost compulsive drinking of water when I go to tastings, I haven’t had a hangover in a couple years, much to the chagrin of those with whom I drink.