Some kinds of beer give me headaches...why?

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motleybrew

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Don't mean to make a zombie thread, but I was curious about this as well. I've noticed my beers with higher adjunct percentages (namely corn) give me wicked headaches. What was said about fusels/impurities I know is true. But, does corn have a propensity to produce more just by default? My all barley beers rarely give me a hangover.
 

longhornbarrett

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I get headaches from beers that are hopped too highly. Ipas give me headaches instantly

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Vigo_Carpathian

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I get bad headaches from drinking beer with flaked wheat, but when I use malted wheat i'm perfectly fine. Not really sure why. I'm fine with all the other flaked adjuncts too.
 
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mortal888

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Well, I started this thread and its been two years of home brewing and no more headaches. Even if I drink until i'm plastered on home brew, I get no headaches. I've brewed IPA's, Browns, Porters, Stouts, you name it and no more headaches.

What I found was bothering me was an alcohol booster I was throwing in to my brews made from corn sugar that boosted the alcohol content by 1%. If this was what caused my problems and it was a cheap way of boosting alcohol, then you can bet your butt it's being added into commercial beers to get the boost.

http://www.austinhomebrew.com/product_info.php?products_id=10137
 

Opiate42

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Well, I started this thread and its been two years of home brewing and no more headaches. Even if I drink until i'm plastered on home brew, I get no headaches. I've brewed IPA's, Browns, Porters, Stouts, you name it and no more headaches.

What I found was bothering me was an alcohol booster I was throwing in to my brews made from corn sugar that boosted the alcohol content by 1%. If this was what caused my problems and it was a cheap way of boosting alcohol, then you can bet your butt it's being added into commercial beers to get the boost.

http://www.austinhomebrew.com/product_info.php?products_id=10137

Thanks for the tip I may avoid that stuff then. I've only just started brewing in the last year and also get headaches from **** beers like Bud. Also get it from Canadian, Labbatt Blue, MGD. Simply had to stop drinking those when I was younger and much happier for it anyway.

I've gotten smacked on good quality micro/craft brew with high alcohol and my own home brew and no headaches.
 

anonbrewer

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I'm no professional so I won't pretend to be, I can only tell you what happened to me. after experimenting with a number of different lagers, Budweiser and Michelob included I noticed I always get a headache immediately, and usually before I even finish one beer. I decided to try pilsner because it's lighter and I've been drinking Miller light ever since, headache free.
 

Michigan_Wolfman

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I used to like Bud Ice, but I stopped drinking it years ago after I started getting headaches after just a few sips from a longneck. I have to wonder if there is something in certain commercial beers that some people have a sensitivity to.
 

jcav

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Sometimes I go downtown to the supply store to get copper or stainless parts and they always chit chat about beer. One guy there says he was told by a foreign brewer that kegged beer contains preservatives and that's why he gets headaches from drinking it.

Seriously, this guy claims he gets headaches from keg beer, but not bottled beer... And this guy in Holland told him it was the preservatives.

So Bud puts formaldehyde in their kegs??

I was just reading this and I though this was funny too. I used to get headaches a long time ago for some reason if I drank Heineken beer, bottle or can. So I stopped drinking it. Then someone told me that they put a small amount of formaldehyde in it to preserve it before they send it over here. I mean really is this true? How could they get away with this? Don't they embalm people with this stuff? I thought it was b.s. but now that you heard it too.... Explains the headaches anyhoo!

John
 

Peku

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I have been brewing for a few months now, about 10 batches or so, and there has been 2 batches causing headache. Both have been lagers. Both have had rice in them. Both have also had corn in them but I have used corn in many other brews without headache.

I think the culprit might be rice and too high fermentation temperature.

The first headache lager was first fermentated at 15 C (59 F) and then carbonating in bottles at about 22 C (71F) and all of those bottles gave me a headache after one pint and a hangover headache too. 10% rice in recipe.

The second headache lager was fermented at 10C (50 F) and then most bottles were carbonating at 10 C (50 F) and those didn't cause me headaches but a few bottles were at 22 C and they seem to give me the headache again. 16% rice in recipe.

So, to me it seems like using lager yeast in too high temperature creates fusel alcohols which in addition to the formaldehyde causes some serious problems. The cause can also be the rice, since I haven't used rice in any other batch but the headache inducing ones. Could be the combination. Also I have hypertension so I think it is one of the reasons the ill effects of these harmful substances manifest this way as a headache.

I'm about to bottle a batch brewed with lager yeast but without rice in recipe.. interesting to see how this turns out since the yeast is the same I used with the first headache batch. I'm putting all but 2 bottles to carbonate in the 10 C temperature (was also fermentation temp) and 2 bottles to 22 C. Will report after about 3 weeks how this turns out.
 
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El Nino

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Not entirely sure, but I did notice the 2 beers that gave me the nastiest hangovers were Old English and Bud Ice. Bud ice was my favorite beer for a little while, until I finally caught on, and switched to Corona. Yeah, back in my 20's I didn't know any better lol.
 
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spunkdoyle26

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My mom and step dad claim that all draft beers give them bad headaches. Although its probably the places they go to dont clean their lines. But I see no reason that draft beer would cause headaches when the same brand in a bottle wouldn't.

I get migraines from draft beers. My cousin said its the bacteria in the lines if they don't clean them.
 

rmchair

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I've been following this issue for years.
Some say the homebrew yeast vitamin B helps.
Some blame sulfites which are used to preserve heavy hopped beers as well as wine. Supposedly sulfites will metabolize caffeine.
Some blame strains of hops producing histamines.
Bud allegedly uses a yeast some say they know gives 12% of the population headaches, but I've also heard Beechwood aging suggested as an issue. A lot of people drink bud on draft which also gets blamed for moldy lines- chicken and egg?
Cheap sugars and wheat or milk based ingredients have long been seen as a culprit.
Some people stopped drinking as a result of headaches and found out they still got headaches though maybe smaller.
Good luck.
Some try hydrating early in the day, eating buttered bread at the end of the night, avoiding dust, mold and pollen, easing tension with changing sitting positions and making sure to get plenty of oxygen and don't grind teeth while sleeping. Also they say try not to fight off the headaches, rather embrace and accept the pain.
I've heard to, while standing straight, tilt head back let sinuses run and spine get relief, also put a cold compress on neck or eyes.
 
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