No Red Wine = No Hot Flashes & Better Sleep

by Magnolia on February 4, 2011

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You have no idea how much I hate to admit what I’m about to tell you. If you know me or have read my blog for any length of time, then you also know how much I love red wine.  Not white wine. Red wine. Deep, dark, dry, red wine.  In fact, the dryer, the better.

I’m not a drinker of anything else.  The occasional Margarita (though they give me headaches) and maybe a Bloody Mary every now then. (They are so yum, by the way) But, it’s rare, very rare that I drink anything but red wine.

I’ve been savoring red wines for the better part of thirty years now and don’t think I’ll ever be able to fully express just how much I love it. But then, maybe I just did.

But, what I wanted to tell you is that I haven’t had any red wine for the better part of two weeks now and I noticed two very important things:

  • I haven’t been experiencing hot flashes.  Not during the day and especially not at night.
  • I’ve been sleeping very well.

I have known that red wine can trigger hot flashes for many women and I’ve also known that alcohol interferes with good sleep rhythms. But, until the last two weeks, I’ve never noticed such a significant difference in how I feel (hot flashes and sleep in particular) and felt I should share with you all.

If like me, you are a lover of red wine and are suffering with hot flashes and night sweats and not sleeping well.  Do yourself a favor and conduct an experiment.  Stop drinking red wine for a couple of weeks and see if you do not notice a significant drop in hot flashes and night sweats and that you actually sleep better.

On a final note, soy has been shown to help many women with hot flashes and night sweats also.

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{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan - p90x coach February 21, 2011 at 3:39 pm

I think the benefits of red wine to heart is still unclear which is why doctors are wary of encouraging anyone to start drinking! The mixed effects drink, now has few downs from your experience!


Holly February 24, 2011 at 11:39 am

Ugh-I was hoping you weren’t going to say give up red wine. I too am a big fan. While I’m glad your experiment worked, I’m going to tolerate a few more hot flashes before I conduct mine.


Magnolia February 24, 2011 at 11:43 am

I hear ya, Holly. It was NOT a happy moment for Magnolia when I realized my red wine (which I friggin’ LOVE by the way) was giving me hot flashes and destroying my sleep. :(

Perhaps when I’m further along in my own menopause journey, I might be able to take it up again. But, for now, Magnolia must abstain.

Thanks for stopping by.



Pammie September 12, 2011 at 11:32 am

I was guessing this may be why I am flashing at night! I just have not wanted to give my nightly relaxing two glasses of wine up. I am wondering if the problem relates to certain grapes or just all RED grapes
in general. I am with all of you in loving my red wine! What else do we need to give up as Women.


Magnolia September 12, 2011 at 11:35 am

I hear ya, Pammie…….I did not want to admit it either. But, the proof was in the pudding……….I backed away from it, no more hot flashes and better sleep. I try it again……hot flashes and fitful sleep. Sigh. The choice was obvious. But, that doesn’t mean I have to like it! :)


Sandra October 27, 2011 at 1:59 pm

I just found this because I was searching for wine making people unable to sleep with hot flashes. I am a 29 year old who recently had to give up red wine completely so I can sleep. I didn’t know what was causing my intense hot flashes during the night or interrupting my sleep when finally I decided to do an experiment and found that it was red wine. I’m a bit heartbroken though. I love red wine! But I’ve had the best sleep for the past 6 months or so since giving it up. I believe it might also have something to do with dehydration. When I drink wine, I tend not to drink water and I’ve also noticed a similar effect with the hot flashes and problems sleeping when I don’t drink enough water. Wish I could drink that red, but now sleep seems more important.


Magnolia October 27, 2011 at 2:39 pm

I’m with you, Sandra,

I love red wine too. But, red wine does not love me. My personal experiment revealed what I did not want to accept……no red wine equals better sleep and no hot flashes. :)

Since you’re only 29 and you’ve figured this out, you are one step ahead of the rest of us!



K. Thatcher November 21, 2011 at 6:01 pm

OMG!!!!! I have been noticing the same thing. I thought I was crazy. Love a nice dry red wine myself, but lately it seems when I indulge the night sweats are unbearable. Thank you for the post.


Magnolia November 21, 2011 at 8:34 pm

Hi, K,

Nope. You’re not crazy. :) Red wine definitely causes many women to have hot flashes. Join the club.



cameronsmom814 December 21, 2011 at 11:17 pm

But has anyone found a cure, or anything at all that helps? I have the same problem….love red wine but it causes me hot flashes during the night which lead to anxiety. I was told to take a non-drowsey anti-histimine AND drink lots of water if drinking wine. Can’t say if I think it works or not, which leads me to think if I can’t tell then it’s NOT working. I’d love to hear of any other possible remedies to try.


Magnolia December 21, 2011 at 11:21 pm

I haven’t found any alternatives, Lisa. Only that it is documented that red wine does cause hot flashes and night sweats for some women. Personally, I tolerate it. Though I will say that testosterone pellets that I use have helped with my hot flashes considerably.



Bird Brain March 25, 2014 at 6:37 pm

unfortunately, a “non-drowsy” antihistamine has *ephedrine (or caffeine) in it to counteract the drowsiness & can, thus, result in broken sleep. if you’re looking for something to help you sleep better (either sleep thru the hot flashes, or doze back off afterward), I would suggest Bonine (or Equate) Motion Sickness Relief Tablets.
Bonine is an old-school antihistamine; it won’t raise your blood pressure & only makes you *mildly* drowsy. For help with hot flashes and sleep, I’ve had very good results with Gaia Herbs – St. John’s Wort (1 liquid phyto-cap at bedtime); which is a better choice for me (I can’t take the ground-up herb type of capsules, as they make me nauseous). Also, consider taking 50-60 mg Soy Isoflavones at bedtime for help with hot flashes. And, there’s always Gaia Herbs Kava Kava for help with sleep & nervousness during the daytime.


Malia December 29, 2011 at 1:15 pm

I have tried red wine that has minimal sulfites and this has helped. The wine says on the front..”no sulfites detected” and can be found in the organic wine section. Good luck.


Magnolia December 29, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Excellent, Malia! Thanks for the tip and for stopping by!



Blythe January 4, 2012 at 1:04 am

I totally agree with you. I had 3 glasses of red wine on New Years Eve, and have been having hot flashes since then (that’s 3 days and counting). This was after I hadn’t had a hot flash in almost a year!!


Molly February 12, 2012 at 8:48 am

Everything you state about ‘red’ wine is true for me, except substitute in ‘white’.


Kathy McCullough March 8, 2012 at 10:10 am

I, too, have noticed a big difference and it is a bummer! :( I kept hoping I could make them go away with natural supplements (like Arginex from Standard Process). It helped, but it seems like not drinking my red wine helps more. Sob.


Magnolia March 8, 2012 at 10:25 am

I hear ya, Kathy!

I’ve been on the wagon for a couple of months now. Absolutely no alcohol at all. Last night, I wanted a Margarita and Mexican food so bad, I couldn’t stand it.

My son and I went down to the closet Mexican restaurant and I completely indulged my craving with 2 marvelous Margaritas. I had flippin hot flashes ALL. Night. Long.

So, for me, it seems it’s alcohol in general that is causing my hot flash misery.

And like you……sob :(



arlene April 16, 2012 at 12:35 pm

what about white wine?


Magnolia April 18, 2012 at 9:18 am

Yes, Arlene, some women do report that white wine gives them hot flashes as well.



TT May 15, 2012 at 6:40 pm

I was recently reading about sugar levels and hypoglycemia and the article stated that the body has trouble processing the sugar from alcohol because the body is so busy processing the alcohol and I assumed it may creates the hot flash reaction trying to regulate the sugar. Currently, I am studying how to counteract the sugar in the wine hoping it will reduce or eliminate the hot flashes.

“The majority of alcohol metabolism takes place in the liver, which is also the primary location of glucose production. Because of this, alcohol intake can interfere with the liver’s production of glucose and may cause hypoglycemia — or low blood sugar.”


Kelly June 4, 2012 at 11:57 am

I’ve been avoiding researching the connection between red wine and hot flashes for 6 weeks now. (I had my first hot flash 6 weeks ago) I have had hot flashes every hour like clock work! They are so severe the people around me know I’m having one without my saying anything. Red face, sweat, and generally red all over. (I don’t do anything half way) I started a low dose of estregin and it really cut down on the day sweats, but the nights are still horrible.

I’m going to give up my much loved red wine as of today and see if it helps…


Magnolia June 4, 2012 at 12:11 pm

It made a big difference for me, Kelly. The estrogen should help for sure. Perhaps after you’ve been on it for a while, it might help kick the night sweats.

I used to drink soy milk for mine, by the way. And it worked wonders.

Sorry you have to give up the red wine. It was tough for me to do, but it was a good idea. In fact, alcohol in general doesn’t sit well with me at all, the older I get especially.



Dee July 15, 2012 at 10:57 pm

Yep, I am a big fan of red wine BUT NOT A FAN OF HOT FLASHES. I gave up Red Wine as well—my flashes are gone—but the sleeplessness is still around. I take a low dose hormone. If I plan on having wine I plan on having hot flashes. It’s miserable. But, once in awhile I will indulge in a good glass of wine. White wine does not make me have hot flashes like the red wine–at least not as severe. Champagne really brings on the flashes. I am hoping that someday I will be able to have red wine without worrying about SWEATING all night long. I have been doing this menopause thing for about 6 years now–ugh.


Magnolia July 20, 2012 at 3:32 pm

I hear ya, Dee!

I love my red wine too, but I do so much better when I don’t drink it. I don’t have hot flashes and I sleep better too. the sugar in alcohol does not agree with my blood sugar and has a huge affect on my moods as well.



Beth August 19, 2012 at 8:47 pm

Oh Ladies, let me say this. It only just happened last nite. We regularly drink red wine with dinner. My waking in the night has been horrid. Wake, wait a few seconds, Sweat like crazy, then chill like crazy, and then sometimes, only sometimes get back to sleep. The sleep I get is broken, and fragmented, hence no rem, no dreams, and feel like crap every morning. So…. last night had white, and holy mackeral, I slept thru the night with no waking. Now, tonite had white wine again (even though had roast beef) so we’ll see. After reading all of yalls posts, I highlty suspect it is the red wine keeping me up. Fingers crossed this the magic, but alas my friends, I so love red wine, this will be an adjustment, but I will so absolutely anything for sleep.


Kelly September 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Crud. I was so afraid of this. I just googled red wine and menopause, and bingo. Why couldn’t it be red meat or brussel sprouts?

Okey dokey. Off to give it a try, I hope. Abstention is no fun.

Love your website by the way.


Magnolia September 10, 2012 at 8:30 am

Hi Kelly,

Yes, red wine is a culprit for a lot of women with hot flashes. I wish it weren’t true, but it’s common.



Jean July 17, 2013 at 9:48 pm

I just quit drinking red wine 2 nights ago. Hot flashes seem milder, but still wake up every 90 min – 2hrs. Does it take awhile to really start helping?


Magnolia July 17, 2013 at 9:50 pm

I would think 2 days is not long enough to notice much of a difference, Jean. But, there could be other issues which are causing your hot flashes too.



Elipanda July 29, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Yes, it is sad but true about Red wine and hot flashes. I recently did a 15 day cleanse and not 1 single hot flash the whole time and I slept like a baby! Before that I had them every night, yes I was drinking wine every night. Once the cleanse was over and had some wine I had a terrible night of no sleep and hot flashes. Now I notice on the days I don’t have any wine everything is fine and when I do drink it I have a bad night. That’s all there is to it! Red wine causes them the worst, white wine is a problem too but not as severe.


Lemons July 21, 2014 at 8:13 am

All wine will have that effect. It is the alcohol that makes it happen and you don’t have to be menopausal to experience that effect. I do not drink a lot so I keep a fan on me and take two aspirin before I go to bed and sleep.

It isn’t just wine either, all alcohol can have that effect….

I refuse to give up the things I like over a little discomfort. Life is too short. :)


andrea September 3, 2014 at 4:11 am

about a month ago, i started experiencing chest pains, heat waves (not full on flashes) accompanied by slight nausea, interrupted sleep, oh and did i mention the chest pains? this was all accompanied by anxiety and panic attacks that i never experienced before.
i thought i was presenting heart disease symptoms (ignorant of peri-menopause symptoms being nearly identical) – i googled day and night then broke down and went to doc. EKG fine, all vital signs amazing (i am a runner and cyclist and eat very clean – i eat a LOT, but keep it clean). doc did suggest GERD as a possibility (turns out it was not). she also referred me to cardiologist. 3 tests came back showing that at age 51 i am doing great – i will skip the detailed bragging about the results, but i mean, really, it’s a part-time job to stay fabulous :)
i continued to research. WHAT THE HELL DO I HAVE?
then i found your article about red wine. 2 glasses of pinot noir (healthy, right?) were my evening joy. not a beer or liquor person. just that “healthy” red wine. well one night, i was out of wine, very tired, and by accident, skipped my evening pinot noir ritual. guess who slept thru the night that night and had very little night sweats and ZERO nausea waves? i went back to your article – read it more closely. i went on a beach vaca and we were were on a chardonnay kick (summer, outside) and i realized, after 5 more days with no pinot noir, i was having ZERO chest pains, no anxiety, no NOTHING. it had to be the red wine.
thank you for getting this information out into the world. 5 weeks ago, i thought menopause was hot flashes and weight gain – i had no idea that the symptoms are painful and scary and anxiety-inducing. and if it were up to my primary physician, i’d have been on pills to help, not working it out with what i put into my body. thank you again.
oh and i am now a chardonnay girl for my end of day take the edge off ritual.


Dawn Terrell Sexton December 5, 2014 at 6:50 am

I’m also wondering if at least part of the problem could have to do with the pesticides that are used on the grapes. Here are some references:

1. Grapes are on the Dirty Dozen — this is a list of produce with the most pesticides. The EWG publishes this list annually:

2. According to everything I’ve read so far, the pesticides end up in the wine — both on the skin and inside the fruit due to the water absorbed when the crops are watered. One study found over 200 chemicals in wines. Here are a few references:


Dawn Terrell Sexton December 5, 2014 at 6:55 am

Please add to the first paragraph:

Pesticides can’t be good for people — after all they kill pests. Information can be found all over the web that describes the negative health impacts that pesticides can and do have on people. I know I don’t want that stuff in my body. Check out information on Roundup that is used on crops everywhere, and yes, that is the same Roundup you can buy at Walmart to kill weeds on your lawn.


Eleanor February 8, 2015 at 7:14 am

I started with the red face after drinking a few glasses about a year ago – (although I started menopause in 2010 and although I have had hot flashes I never had the horrible red face before) – it doesnt seem to matter what I have red or white but red is probably worse – it looks awful and it has made me very miserable – if anyone can find the answer to this not happening I would be very happy !


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