Is it ok for me to drink a two glasses of red wine - on warfarin

As some of you know I started Warfarin yesterday....I have guests tonight and and having 2 glasses of

decent red wine.....I probably won't drink alcohol again until next weekend and that will again be only 2 glasses.

My first blood check will be on Friday (i.e. they told me weekly for 8 weeks). Will my blood be all messed up with these 2 glasses of wine? I appreciate any response from anyone already on Warfarin. Many thanks.

22 Replies

  • Hi Gemini, sorry, did n't see this post, have sent you a comment to your previous post, enjoy you wine, Cheers.


  • It depends on how big the glasses are :-) . Seriously, not saying it's OK, I wouldn't know, but I drank 2 large glasses of red wine every night for three years till I went tee-total six months ago. I had no problems with Warfarin or INR when drinking. When I stopped though, my cholesterol went sky high !!!

    Cheers, have one for me.


  • My INR nurse told me "Unofficially" that what her father does is drink wine when he eats things that have Vit K in them. Alcohol increases your INR so it counteracts the Vit K.

  • I eat plates of spinach and drink red wine. My inr is very stable. It is colds and infections that sends it loopy.

  • Re INR and red wine, when drinking (2 large glasses every day) I had a fairly stable INR on a dose of 7.5mg/day. Now tee-total I'm on an average dose of 8.14mg/day to stay within range. Whether it's just the wine making the difference I don't know.


  • INteresting! I haven't touched a glass of wine since my ablation (concerns about the metoprolol and flecainide) and I think that is why I am so crabby!

    Make it a great wine - enjoy!

  • Enjoy the wine! You're lucky if it doesn't set off your AF, I am finding red wine and gardening are a terrible combination... If I drink more than a small glass of anything I do what Shadski's nurse's father does, and try and have more than my usual amount of green leafy vegetables, in the hope that it all balances out!

  • I'm on 3.5 mg warfarin for the last 6 months since my a fib diagnosis and stroke. I have asked the wine question ( coz I like my tipple )to every doctor nurse consultant I meet and they all say have a couple of glasses every now and then , but no bingeing ! It raises your inr ! So like everything in life.........moderation ! Enjoy, life's too short !


  • I used to sail with a load of doctors. They all said that when a patient tells you how much they drink, double it. So don't forget to halve the figure when you tell the doctor ... :-)

  • Yeah, I think this is a myth which really annoys me! Of course some people lie but they should not make heuristic assumptions without evidence.

  • red or white wine every night half a bottle, stable inr and it doesn't bring on my af,. Stress brings on that in about two secs. I can be sitting at pc all day and stress and deadlines send it into overdrive.

  • Ha! Tell me about it.....! Riding my bike (flat surface only), walking etc no problem!...Sitting at the PC with phone ringing and people all wanting a bit of me at once...instant AF episode...!!! Stress is def one of my triggers!!

    I have to re-visit red wine to see if IT IS a trigger...never used to be....don't want to bring on an episode though :(

  • This is me to a tee....

  • I have been told if it's what you normally do, carry on with it... and the warfarin will be dosed according to it. IF you never did it before starting on the warfarin then don't...... just like you shouldn't totally change diet. Apparently.

  • Still drink red and white wine, sometimes it triggers af sometimes it doesn't. I haven't made any adjustments to my diet since I started warfarin apart from stopping cranberries


  • I was on weekly warfarin checks whilst awaiting cardio version. I like a few pints of laged, and the nurse said its O.o but don't binge. Since then I often have 2 or 3 pints, but not everyday. Its not affected my inr. Just try it ,see how it goes.I bet it doesn't make any difference. Gerry

  • I am on prropafonone and mytoprolol and was told not to have any alcohol at all. Had ablation 14 months ago and had 1 episode of atrial flutter. Lasted about a day. I am on a blood thinner and wine thins the blood even more. It has been almost 3 years since I have a glass of wine and that was when I was diagnosed with AFib. just be careful with any alcohol.

  • Sorry if I am a bit puzzled and I realise that everyone is different and have their own individual problems. but why does everyone seem to accept that Warfarin is the only answer. Of course in some cases it might be but I have AF + a blood cell production problem (which can also cause clots in it's own right) and from the experiences of friends being on Warfarin I did not want to go on Warfarin as suggested by my heart surgeon. In fact my GP indicated that I might try one of the newer drugs. I checked with the heart surgeon and the hematologist and they both had no problems with this and so my GP has now put me on Rivaroxoban . According to the booklet which came along with the drug there is no issue with alcohol or diet and it saves the NHS money in the long run because there is no time used having to monitor the drug frequently. As I said everyone is different but is it not worth discussing with your specialists and GP especially if it helps you to lead a normal lifestyle which I think we all deserve in our latter years ? Only time will tell if this is the answer, but I will post on here if there are any problems. My point is that there are alternatives available to NHS patients but no one seems to be telling a lot of them. BOL and keep your chin up

  • Hi Greengo

    You're absolutely correct there are alternatives to warfarin, the new anti-coagulants, or NOACs as many people calle them.

    And in cases like your where there is another reason where you might not be able to take warfarin, then they are very useful.

    But they do not save the NHS money (Yet) even with testing costs of warfarin they are much more expensive and purely on the "money" side the cost is all drug related so falls into GPs budgets not split between the GP and the Hospital. So the booklet you are reading is not backed up by official NICE costings.

    Just to remind you although I am sure you know, currently there is not immediate antidote to the NOACs although they have a much shorter half life than warfarin (stay in the body a much shorter time) although antidotes are under development.

    I am sure that the NOACs will become much more common very soon, but for the moment warfarin is a fairly benign drug with few problems, and just a little diet change and need to testing, so for most of us we're quite happy to take it. And you certainly can live a "normal lifestyle" and take warfarin, I know I do.

    I actually look forward to the day when the NOACs and warfarin will be able to be directly compared solely for their efficacy and not with the dreaded "budget" word hanging over them, but it will need the antidotes to be fully developed and tested before that can really happen.

    Be well


  • Hi Beancounter, thanks for the post.

    Granted warfarin is cheaper to prescribe but it says here that NICE seem to think that the new drugs ARE cost effective (hope that this link works) indicating less monitoring etc. What does it cost every time you see your GP/Consultant etc ?

    There are a lot of articles saying that a antidote has now been found so hopefully it will all come to be as you wish soon. In fact I received a mail recently (from the AF Association I think) announcing just this. Yes some people are content to go along with warfarin but a lot of people would be happier if they could live a fuller lifestyle and not having to be monitored continually and watching their diet

    I and a lot of other people after working all their lives want to travel and live freely as possible and if these new drugs can make it possible, fantastic

    I just feel that a lot have people do not seem to be given the choice or information by their GPs as to what alternatives there are concerning drugs that are fully approved by NICE and are now available on the NHS

    Here's to the future and of better things to look forward to


  • Hi Johnny

    No I know about that, but "cost effective" is not the same as the same cost as warfarin.

    NICE did a long paper on this, which effectively said that ALL anti-coagulation treatment was cost effective simply due to the very high costs of strokes for the NHS. But as I said the NOACs are at least twice the price of warfarin (including testing)

    The antidote is not yet available, it's still awaiting licensing and is undergoing patient trials as we speak for all the NOACs.

    And the probleme here is NICE approved or not it comes down to money currently, prescribe warfarin and the GP gets charged roughly £30 a year, the testing costs are generally paid by the hospital or under a different budget. Prescribe a NOAC and it's not less than £75 a month and can be a lot more in some cases.

    But I fully agree here's to the future.

  • Hi Ian

    Strangely it was the heart surgeon who wanted to put me on warfarin but it was actually my GP who urged me to go on a NOAC instead. The GP actually said " She (the heart surgeon) can not wait to get you on warfarin, can she?"

    The heomotologist treating my cell disorder had no problems with either drug so that was ok

    My GP is obviously no accountant like yourself but I am now on rivaroxoban by choice and her advice

    Reading posts on Health Unlocked it seems that some people are not happy about being on warfarin unlike the fortunate "most of us" as you said.

    It seems that depression is a big factor with AF. Could a lot of this depression be due to the thought of people having to change their lifestyle to accommodate warfarin, regular monitoring, diet and travel restriction problems etc ?

    Regular monitoring on warfarin must be at a cost to the NHS in time and money, my father in law is monitored at home weekly by a nurse opposed to being possibly being checked maybe yearly on a NOAC. His dosage is also up and down weekly and it is causing chaos

    Another factor is that a NOAC is only in your system 24 hours so miss one pill and your body is clear of it the next day, but regardless of this the antidote is very close. So there IS light at the end of the tunnel folks

    I guess it is a case of negatives against plus's to each person

    Because everyone has individual problems surely everyone should have at least the chance to discuss the ins and outs with their GP and make their own personal choice. After all whatever drugs are actually on the NHS should be available for everyone if they are acceptable to their condition.

    Best regards, keep well and keep up the good work, there is a future


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