Poll Alcohol: How Well Do You Tolerate It?

How well do you tolerate alcohol

  • Fine! No problem

    Votes: 3 6.4%
  • Moderately well

    Votes: 4 8.5%
  • Somewhat well

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Somewhat poorly

    Votes: 8 17.0%
  • Quite poorly

    Votes: 15 31.9%
  • Really poorly - like poison to my system

    Votes: 17 36.2%

  • Total voters
    47

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
My tolerance of alcohol particularly beer, hard cider or wine is very low. I tend to feel depleted and shaky. It's always been that way and I've never been able to figure out why. I wonder how widespread it is?
 

San Diego

Well-Known Member
I've always been a cheap date lol, but can no longer tolerate even a tiny amount of alcohol. It will put me in bed sick as a dog for several days. The last time I had a few sips I ended up unable to care for myself for several days (and at least 2 weeks to climb back to baseline). I really feared I had done permanent damage. Never again!
 

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
I've always been a cheap date lol, but can no longer tolerate even a tiny amount of alcohol. It will put me in bed sick as a dog for several days. The last time I had a few sips I ended up unable to care for myself for several days (and at least 2 weeks to climb back to baseline). I really feared I had done permanent damage. Never again!
It's so weird! I wonder what the heck is going on. I feel this must be some sort of tremendous clue. The effects come on really quickly for me...
 

San Diego

Well-Known Member
It's so weird! I wonder what the heck is going on. I feel this must be some sort of tremendous clue. The effects come on really quickly for me...
I blame inability to detox, but who knows. The intolerance came on quickly for me - one day I could have a couple of drinks and a month later I couldn't tolerate a few sips. I wonder if it coincides with that 3 year shift in cytokines? My intolerance to alcohol came approximately 3 years after I went from moderate to severe ME/CFS.
 

LondonPots

Active Member
I vaguely remember reading that it's because the liver stops doing other work (energy production?) until it has cleared this toxin (the alcohol). I drink very little now, though I hadn't been a big drinker since I was a teenager (natch).
 
Never have been able to tolerate beer--half a bottle and I'm lightheaded and shaky--hard ciders or gluten free beers were a bit better. Wine makes me flush beet-red and I'm dizzy by the end of the first glass (this has got worse since I got sick but I never had much tolerance even decades ago). Discovering vodka and whisky was a game-changer--those I could drink in (relative quantity) and rarely got more than tipsy. Only once did I get sick and hungover but even my hard-drinking friends said my consumption that night was rather prodigious.

Since I've started LDN, however, I don't touch more than a sip of anything. I mistakenly took my LDN and drank heavily of whisky one night all at the same time and, yowza, was I sick all night long. Most likely, a moderate intake with LDN wouldn't be a problem but after that one experience, I'm not risking it!
 

Bettina Carman

New Member
I have FM, app. 5 years before it got so bad I realised I was sick, I suddenly could't tolerate alcohol. Had really bad hang vers lasting for 4-5 days. Now just a couple of sips makes me feel so bad.
 

lisapetrison

Active Member
Ethanol is a fungal toxin - a mycotoxin - made by yeasts such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

It is a mycotoxin that people's livers are evolved/designed to process easily, with a high percentage of our liver enzymes (I read once something like 20%) existing specifically to break it down. But it is a mycotoxin nonetheless.

This is why you can use vodka as an effective sterilizing agent against other microorganisms. It kills them off, just as (say) Stachybotrys toxin kills off a wide variety of bacteria in the environment (and maybe in our guts), and just as Penicillin (another mold toxin) kills off certain bacteria in our bodies.

The main reason that these toxins are made is so that the fungi that make them have less competition from other microorganisms and can grow more freely. Once alcoholic beverages are fermented, they generally are going to be safe to drink even if you leave them out, because anything other than that yeast is not going to be able to grow in it. The ethyl alcohol - a mold toxin - kills them off.

There's a fair amount of literature showing that the combination of other mycotoxins such as aflatoxin with ethanol is more damaging to mammals than if just the other mycotoxins were present by themselves. Here's a paper showing an effect in mice, for instance.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20837563

Therefore, someone who has experienced substantial exposures to environmental mycotoxins (such as by living in a moldy home) might reasonably be expected to be harmed more by drinking ethanol than the average person would. The synergy is key.

Another problem with alcohol is that it often tends to be contaminated with mycotoxins other than ethanol (such as ochratoxin, trichothecene or aflatoxin). This tends to be especially the case with beer and wine, but it may be an issue in some distilled spirits as well.

Europe has much stricter standards for levels of these other mycotoxins in food and drink than the U.S. does, and so if people suspect that these toxins are the reason that they are reacting to alcoholic beverages, trying European brands may be worthwhile. Higher-quality U.S. brands (especially spirits brands) possibly also may be safer, because of the greater care that these companies may take in terms of monitoring the quality of the grains being used.

Here's an article by Dave Asprey on this topic:

https://www.bulletproofexec.com/alcohol-without-the-hangover-bulletproof-partying-business-networking/

Personally, when i was living in the moldy house, I was pretty alcohol intolerant in general. When I did drink, I did much better with higher-end spirits, such as Stoli vodka or Wild Turkey Rare Breed bourbon.

Now that I am not in a bad environment any more, and especially if I am really clear of environmental exposures (such as when camping in a good location), I am able to tolerate a variety of alcoholic beverages much better than I used to. Still, I usually stick with either high-end spirits or occasionally expensive craft beers, because I do better with them.

I used to be rather a wine connoisseur (and even worked for an importer of expensive Italian wines at one point in my life), but an awfully lot of wine is contaminated with toxins that cause me problems. So that is like playing Russian Roulette, for me.

This is a good topic. Thanks for bringing it up.

Best,

Lisa Petrison, Ph.D.
Paradigm Change
www.paradigmchange.me
 

CathK

Member
Abrupt change. I was not a huge drinker, but did fine before I got sick. Now, 2 sips of wine and I'm light-headed, shaky, & feel sick (but don't feel intoxicated). One of those seriously ironic symptoms - now, when I really *need* a drink, I can't have one!
 

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
Ethanol is a fungal toxin - a mycotoxin - made by yeasts such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

It is a mycotoxin that people's livers are evolved/designed to process easily, with a high percentage of our liver enzymes (I read once something like 20%) existing specifically to break it down. But it is a mycotoxin nonetheless.

This is why you can use vodka as an effective sterilizing agent against other microorganisms. It kills them off, just as (say) Stachybotrys toxin kills off a wide variety of bacteria in the environment (and maybe in our guts), and just as Penicillin (another mold toxin) kills off certain bacteria in our bodies.

The main reason that these toxins are made is so that the fungi that make them have less competition from other microorganisms and can grow more freely. Once alcoholic beverages are fermented, they generally are going to be safe to drink even if you leave them out, because anything other than that yeast is not going to be able to grow in it. The ethyl alcohol - a mold toxin - kills them off.

There's a fair amount of literature showing that the combination of other mycotoxins such as aflatoxin with ethanol is more damaging to mammals than if just the other mycotoxins were present by themselves. Here's a paper showing an effect in mice, for instance.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20837563

Therefore, someone who has experienced substantial exposures to environmental mycotoxins (such as by living in a moldy home) might reasonably be expected to be harmed more by drinking ethanol than the average person would. The synergy is key.

Another problem with alcohol is that it often tends to be contaminated with mycotoxins other than ethanol (such as ochratoxin, trichothecene or aflatoxin). This tends to be especially the case with beer and wine, but it may be an issue in some distilled spirits as well.

Europe has much stricter standards for levels of these other mycotoxins in food and drink than the U.S. does, and so if people suspect that these toxins are the reason that they are reacting to alcoholic beverages, trying European brands may be worthwhile. Higher-quality U.S. brands (especially spirits brands) possibly also may be safer, because of the greater care that these companies may take in terms of monitoring the quality of the grains being used.

Here's an article by Dave Asprey on this topic:

https://www.bulletproofexec.com/alcohol-without-the-hangover-bulletproof-partying-business-networking/

Personally, when i was living in the moldy house, I was pretty alcohol intolerant in general. When I did drink, I did much better with higher-end spirits, such as Stoli vodka or Wild Turkey Rare Breed bourbon.

Now that I am not in a bad environment any more, and especially if I am really clear of environmental exposures (such as when camping in a good location), I am able to tolerate a variety of alcoholic beverages much better than I used to. Still, I usually stick with either high-end spirits or occasionally expensive craft beers, because I do better with them.

I used to be rather a wine connoisseur (and even worked for an importer of expensive Italian wines at one point in my life), but an awfully lot of wine is contaminated with toxins that cause me problems. So that is like playing Russian Roulette, for me.

This is a good topic. Thanks for bringing it up.

Best,

Lisa Petrison, Ph.D.
Paradigm Change
www.paradigmchange.me
Really interesting Lisa!

I do better with hard alcohol...I rarely drink it but I do much better with it - which never made sense to me if it was the alcohol that was doing it. This may be why...(who knew?)
 

Folk

Well-Known Member
I'm not sure. The whole time I had FMS alcohol was my best medicine. 80% less pain while "on it". And normally I would drink a lot, and could tolerate like health people (or more). But from time to time I would get an abdnormal flush in my face and chest while drinking, never understood that.

Now after developing CFS like symptoms I'm not sure... I've tried twice with no problem but it's been 4 months since I don't try it.
 

justME

Active Member
Since I've started LDN, however, I don't touch more than a sip of anything. I mistakenly took my LDN and drank heavily of whisky one night all at the same time and, yowza, was I sick all night long. Most likely, a moderate intake with LDN wouldn't be a problem but after that one experience, I'm not risking it!
don't ME, LDN and booze all influence neurotransmitters?
 

LondonPots

Active Member
I've just remembered an incident regarding alcohol (this one not embarrassing, for a change): when I first got ill one of my main symptoms was a permanently stiffened back, such that I could only hobble along, bent a bit sideways. One evening I had a few beers with a friend and, hallelujah, I was able to run for the train afterwards! It completely relaxed my muscles. It didn't last, sadly, but was very interesting nonetheless!
 

Claudia Goodell

New Member
For me I mostly get a migraine following alcohol consumption, but sometimes it just makes me feel quite bad, and usually the migraine will come from red wine or hard liquor, but if I've been active and already am on the verge of PEM it can happen with beer as well. As a result I drink alcohol quite seldom, and when I do I typically will only have 1 or 1 1/2 drinks. I also sometimes get a sensation quite quickly if I am going to have a bad reaction to alcohol and I will stop drinking it right away. I was always a lightweight with alcohol, and am more so now, probably because I don't consume much, but one has to wonder if that is just part of the seemingly pattern of ME/CFS patients' alcohol intolerance issue.My mother has never been able to tolerate ANY alcohol, meds or other chemicals.
 

boohealth

New Member
There is also a histamine issue with red wine (not sure about beer). You can take an enzyme called DAO before drinking wine, eating cheese or other foods that trigger or increase gut histamine. I do nicely with fine cognacs--I don't like sugary liquors at all. Also, there are now pure fruit artisanal brandies in numerous states. They are essentially clear, unaged brandies. Aromatic, but dry, and you don't have to worry about mycotoxins from improper grain storage.
 

goldenapple

Member
For me it can really vary. I seem to tolerate cider the best, and usually do ok with tequila or scotch, maybe 4 drinks a month. Red wine and beer are the worst. Sometimes I can even tolerate those without a problem, sometimes even my safe drinks will trigger immediate allergy symptoms or pain/fatigue the next day. I try to avoid alcohol most of the time, and when I'm having an active flair I absolutely avoid it.
 

Claudia Goodell

New Member
There is also a histamine issue with red wine (not sure about beer). You can take an enzyme called DAO before drinking wine, eating cheese or other foods that trigger or increase gut histamine. I do nicely with fine cognacs--I don't like sugary liquors at all. Also, there are now pure fruit artisanal brandies in numerous states. They are essentially clear, unaged brandies. Aromatic, but dry, and you don't have to worry about mycotoxins from improper grain storage.
Thanks so much boohealth for your helpful input. I will research the enzyme DAO and see if it will help me. I am surprised by your information about cognacs and unaged brandies. I would have dismissed those both as too sweet, but will look into them now. Best, Claudia
 

LondonPots

Active Member
I will research the enzyme DAO and see if it will help me.
Claudia, I have histamine intolerance and have tried the DAO supplements - they are very expensive (given how many you'd need to take) and actually had no effect on me. However, I have been trying the Pea Sprouts method of obtaining DAO and seem to be having some success (as measured by how puffy and black my eyes are, or not - and they can get REALLY bruised-looking): http://www.allergynutrition.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Pea-seedlings-as-a-supplement.pdf
Basically, sprout peas in the dark for 10 days and chew the sprouts thoroughly, to access the DAO that it creates.
 

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