Spanish Scientists have developed a new way to preserve grapes and wine which could lessen headaches and the effects of hangover, reports thisislondon.com.uk .
Many drinkers develop a headache and other symptoms after a few glasses of wine - not because of the alcohol but because of the sulphite preservatives which are added.
Sulphites occur naturally at low level but are routinely put into wine - particularly reds - to maintain colour and stop them turning a muddy brown.
A significant number of wine-lovers are allergic to the chemicals and suffer from headaches, skin irritation and difficulty breathing.
A study conducted by Francisco Artes-Hernandez and his team at the Technical University of Cartagena has concluded that using ozone can both replace sulphites and guarantee that the grapes and wine retain high levels of antioxidants.
According to the results, published in Chemistry & Industry magazine: "They found that ozone treatment was 90 per cent as effective as sulphites at preventing decay. "In addition, ozone-treated grapes had up to four times more antioxidants than untreated grapes."
Anti-oxidants are beneficial chemicals associated with cleaning out cancer-causing substances known free radicals from the body.
Jennifer Rohnin, of Chemistry & Industry magazine, said: "Mass-marketed grapes can remain in storage for months and are usually treated with sulphur dioxide to prevent decay. Although the sulphur dioxide is effective, it is corrosive and can cause severe allergic-reactions in some people.
"Wine-makers have a similar problem in that the sulphites added to wines to prolong their shelf-life and allow them to age can make their wines unpalatable to some drinkers."
Andrew Waterhouse, chair of the Department of Viticulture at University of California , Davis , said the ozone process could be tweaked to replace problematic sulphites added to wine, creating the possibility of healthier and less allergenic wines.
The Americans require wine makers to label the addition of sulphites because of the associated allergic reactions.
Complete story at http://www.thisislondon.co.uk