Have you ever felt like your heart rate increases when you drink alcohol? Or maybe you experience an irregular heartbeat after a few drinks?
Common alcohol intolerance symptoms include rapid heart rate, red facial flushing, headaches and nausea.
Why does drinking alcohol increase my heart rate?
The most common explanations for increased heart rate from alcohol include:
- Alcohol intolerance (or Asian Flush)
- Natural reaction to alcohol
- Binge drinking
Here's some details about each possible cause and why this reaction may be happening to you:
If you have an intolerance to alcohol, consuming alcohol will give you some negative symptoms. It could be considered similar to a condition like lactose intolerance and then consuming milk or cheese. Your body will react in a negative way.
Most commonly, this reaction is caused by an ineffective liver enzyme. This means that your body is unable to break down alcohol properly and a toxic chemical can build up in your system. This chemical (called acetaldehyde) causes numerous negative and uncomfortable symptoms when drinking alcohol.
Supplements like Sunset Alcohol Flush Reduction help reduce acetaldehyde in the body as quickly as possible. This helps users enjoy alcohol without becoming overwhelmed with the usual negative symptoms of Asian Flush, such as rapid heart rate and facial flushing.
Most common symptoms of alcohol intolerance:
- Increased heart rate
- Restricted breathing
- Facial flushing
- Nasal congestion
Natural reaction to alcohol
However, alcohol can still increase your heart rate without being intolerant to alcohol. Your body may be experiencing a natural reaction to alcohol. Alcohol makes your blood vessels dilate and get larger, which makes the heart pump more blood to keep the same amount in the body. To do this, it’ll need to pump harder and faster to keep the same amount of blood circulating.
This reaction can also make people feel hot when they drink alcohol, because more warm blood is closer to the surface of the skin. It can also make your skin look a little flushed and make you feel sweaty. However, these symptoms don’t automatically mean you have Asian Flush or alcohol intolerance. In many cases, this can happen to anyone who drinks alcohol.
However, to make things confusing, feeling hot and flushed are also symptoms of Asian Flush. To distinguish between the two, Asian Flush symptoms are usually felt immediately after drinking alcohol and are typically accompanied by other negative symptoms like headaches and dizziness.
Other than alcohol intolerance, Asian Flush or a natural reaction to alcohol, you may experience an increased heartbeat due to binge drinking.
One study found a link between binge drinking and to irregular heartbeat (or arrhythmia). Although the study is fairly outdated, there was enough evidence to create the term "holiday heart syndrome." The idea is that you’re more likely to binge drink alcohol on vacations and holidays, leading to “holiday heart syndrome.”
Not sure what's considered binge drinking? Check out the video below!
Why does my heart beat irregularly after drinking white wine?
Some people find that particular types of alcoholic drinks impact them more than others. Wine, both red and white wine, are reported to cause many people with uncomfortable symptoms.
A glass of wine contains a chemical called tannins. If you’re sensitive to this chemical, you might experience headaches, irregular heart rate or a stuffy nose (or a combination of those symptoms). Wine also has a fair amount of histamines, which can trigger an allergic response in some.
If you reaction to wine is severe, it’s important to talk to a medical professional before drinking again. Although a true allergy to alcohol is rare, it’s still possible and could be serious. Or you might find that you have an allergy to an ingredient used in wine and should pick other alcoholic drinks without that ingredient. If you can avoid that particular ingredient, additive or preservative, your reaction might be reduced or stop completely.
When a person is drunk, does his heart beat rate change?
As mentioned above, your heart rate can change when a person is drunk for a variety of reasons. It could be because you have an intolerance to alcohol and your body is experiencing negative symptoms from this condition. Otherwise, it may be that your body is trying to pump enough blood through your now-dilated blood vessels.
You may also experience a changed heart beat when drunk because the body is dehydrated and might experience some level of increased adrenaline. Stress, caffeine and lack of sleep can all make this reaction more exaggerated and trigger an adrenaline response.
It’s the difference between being drunk with friends in a calm, relaxed environment or being stressed while drinking alone. With your friends, your adrenaline and stress is decreased, so you don’t notice (or experience) as many negative symptoms. Whereas if your stress and adrenaline is high when drinking alone, you may feel your heart rate increase.
Will alcohol affect my heart later in life?
Alcohol isn’t healthy. Anyone who drinks knows that. However, we also know that there is a link between regularly drinking too much alcohol and getting high blood pressure.
In time, high blood pressure (hypertension) caused by too much alcohol consumption can lead to cardiovascular heart disease, leading to other medical issues, heart failure and health concerns.
Atrial fibrillation (or afib) is one abnormal heart rhythm that can be triggered by alcohol consumption. Afib can increase your risk of stroke, so it’s important to speak to your doctor before you drink alcohol.
There is no perfect amount of alcohol that eliminates these risks. However, keeping an eye on your alcohol consumption and avoiding binge drinking can help. If you think you might be drinking too much, make sure to get medical advice.
How to prevent heart palpitations when drinking alcohol
If you have alcohol intolerance, Sunset Alcohol Flush Support is a valid way to reduce a rapid heart rate from alcohol. However, there are few at-home techniques you can try to slow your heart rate naturally:
- Reduce your stress levels (including not drinking alcohol when your stressed)
- Minimise the amount of caffeine you have each day
- Stay hydrated with plenty of water
- Keep a regular exercise routine
- Avoid binge drinking - instead, drink well within your limit