Drinking gin and tonics could sooth hay fever symptoms, study finds

Like we really needed an excuse to break out the Bombay Sapphire

Sarah Young
Friday 05 January 2018 17:14 GMT
The gin revolution shows no sign of abating, and the humble G&T remains a bar staple
The gin revolution shows no sign of abating, and the humble G&T remains a bar staple (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Hay fever has the ability to render us entirely out-of-action, irritating our eyes, blocking our noses and scratching our throats.

But, if you’re on the hunt for a cure this season you might want to forget stockpiling on antihistamines. Instead, a bottle of gin could be the answer.

While it’s been proven that alcohol worsens symptoms of hay fever and asthma, Asthma UK has revealed that a switch to “mother’s ruin” could be better for you than other boozy drinks.

But why? More than 64 per cent of asthma sufferers claim that alcohol can make their allergies worse and this is all down to two triggering chemicals: histamine and sulphites.

Commonly found in darker, fermented beverages like red wine and beer, a boozy lunch is often off the cards for hay fever sufferers but not all hope is lost.

According to Asthma UK, you can find refuge in clear spirits such as gin and vodka, which have a relatively low histamine content. And, while sipping on a G&T won't cure your symptoms altogether, it is your best option.

Gin in particular, due to its distillation process, doesn’t have any sulphites unless the brand choose to amp up their recipe and Absolut Vodka has recently revealed that their products are free of them too.

If you do have a craving for a glass of vino though, it’s best to opt for low-sulphite wines.

Similarly, foods like cured, smoked and tinned meats including bacon, salami and tuna are usually high in histamine. As are cheeses like stilton, cheddar, camembert and parmesan.

Instead, opt for fresh meat and fish and younger cheeses such as ricotta and mozzarella.

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