Eat, drink and be merry...the next morning

How to enjoy wine but avoid hangovers

Recently, a girlfriend asked me if my wine studies unearthed any advice on how to enjoy wine while avoiding hangovers. Turns out, there is much information to share. 

Drink like a French(wo)man... The highly admired diet of French women has sold books around the globe, but it is the way this theoretical woman enjoys wine that we should perhaps pay more attention to. In France, they tend to drink wine with lower alcohol levels and they have their wine with meals. Here's why both of these are good things:

Wine from the Old World is produced with the intention of being enjoyed with a meal. This is important when trying to avoid a hangover because eating whilst sipping will help reduce aceteldehyde in your stomach. Aceteldehyde is created as the liver breaks down alcohol, and it is believed that acetaldehyde is the actual cause of hangovers.

old world vineyard
Old World wines tend to have less alcohol than their New World sister wines, in part do to hotter growing climates in many New World appellations but also because of the New World's focus on fruit-forward wines. Both the hot climate and desire to increase boldness in the wine, have caused many New World wine producers to harvest at higher brix. Brix=sugar; and sugar=alcohol. I'm generalizing a bit, because there are New World producers making wines of lower alcohol levels too; but it's all just to say that if you're looking to reduce your risk of hangovers, you should drink wines that have lower levels of alcohol (i.e. look for 10-13% vs. 14-15%). And, there are more options from the Old World than there are from the New at the moment.

REMINDER: Old World=traditional wine growing regions of Europe; New World=everything else, such as The Americas, Australia, New Zealand, etc.

taking your time, enhances the
pleasure of wine
Watch the clock... Pacing yourself is important too. Taking your time with a great glass of wine ensures that you are appreciating what you are drinking and gives your body a chance to process the alcohol (it takes about one hour for your body to work through an average size glass of wine). So sip your wine and relax. Or boogie between glasses--it's not just for parties and nightclubs anymore. Cranking up your favorite song and shimming around your kitchen is something I highly recommend because it is an extraordinarily fun way to break between glasses!

Keep the water flowing... Be it bubbly or flat, tap or designer-brand, make sure to drink one glass of water for every glass of wine.

If you have a passion for wine, like I do, then finding ways to keep it a happy aspect in your life makes sense. By slowing down and truly savoring what we drink, I'm certain we can all have our wine and sunny mornings too!


  1. My liver thanks you for the helpful information!!


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