Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >
Aug 30, 2014 07:52 PM

Tonic Water & Migraines?

Is there any connection? My wife suspects that, for her, there is, especially if the brand is not Schwepp's.

What do the cocktail experts opine?


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Your wife is right. She is always right. Don't fight it. It comes down to bubble size and sweetener.

    1 Reply
    1. Quinine, which gives tonic water its flavor, is actually used to TREAT migraine, and of course malaria, though in higher doses than would be found even in an entire liter of tonic water. But for people who are sensitive to quinine, a glass of tonic water can cause ringing in the ears, visual disturbances, abnormal heart rhythm, and other problems. There's a genetic predisposition to this in certain people.

      1. Well, I have had migraines since forever and I recently tried a number of tonic waters.

        Not only did I find Schweppe's to be the best, but no, no migraines from any of them.

        1 Reply
        1. re: primosprimos

          Have you ever tried fever tree or Q. Both are less sweet than schweppes, IMO.

        2. I second the Fever Tree recommendation...Or just drink your gin straight!

          1. Possibly. Why not? Everyone's triggers are different. But as a migraine sufferer and tonic drinker, I can say it has never triggered one. Gin on the other hand...