Allergies and Alcohol

Confused why Christmas has left you itchy and bloated, when you were so careful about what you ate?

Perhaps it wasn’t the twelve mince pies that you religiously ate between Christmas and January 1st. If you were drinking gin-based cocktails during the festive time, evidence suggests your symptoms might have been caused by them.


Gin, drunk in moderation, should not be an issue for many of us. The continuing fashion for craft gins has become a business worth over £420 million and gin is now one of the nation’s favourite spirits. A little known fact is that some gin producers use almonds during the distillation process, and these potentially could affect people sensitive to nuts.


Well known brands such as Beefeater, Bombay Sapphire and Amber, Brockman’s, Citadelle, Pink 47 Gin and others use almonds during the distillation process. While the European Food Safety Authority say that ‘proteins and peptides are not carried over into the distillate during a properly controlled distillation process’. In lay terms this means they are unlikely to trigger a severe allergic reaction in susceptible individuals. However, it is possible that a sensitized individual could react. If you want to minimise the likelihood of skin breakouts gin is a drink to watch.


Amaretto and Frangelico obviously contain nuts, but they are not the only bottles to be wary of in the cocktail cabinet. Orgeat syrup, a staple in Tiki Cocktails (the colourful, Tropical style ones such as a Mai Tai) is made from chopped almonds steeped in sugar syrup, as is Falernum, but with added spices, lime and ginger, found in Caribbean inspired cocktails such as the Zombie. It is much less obvious that these drinks contain nuts.


Tree nut allergens typically cause stomach cramps, skin rashes, itches around the eyes and mouth as well as other symptoms, none of which are desirable legacies from New Year, and especially if you were avoiding them in food.


Knowing the pitfalls of a cocktail bar, at least Oodee skincare is one area you can have utter confidence in, with our trusted allergen neutral TM formula.


"Drinking responsibly means more than don’t spill it."