This topic is a highly useful one. As a guy that has had his fair share of alcohol intoxication, I can tell you hangovers are a reaaal pain. In fact apart from being unhealthy, they are one of the many reasons I don’t drink anymore. Of course, the best cure to hangovers is to not indulge at all, but where is the fun in that?
What Causes Hangovers?
Your liver needs water to process alcohol. When you drink too much, your liver has to divert water from other organs like your brain. This is what causes the throbbing headache of a hangover, while alcohol irritates the lining of your stomach and causes nausea. Drinking also drains the body of vitamins and minerals, and reduces the quality of sleep.Toxic chemicals called congeners contribute to hangovers. They are produced when alcohol ferments, with more found in dark drinks like red wine and brandy. The Royal Society of Chemistry advises you to stick to gin or vodka because they are purified by distillation, but light coloured drinks can still cause hangovers. Quantity is key: if you drink a bottle of white wine (three large glasses), you won’t feel great the next day
Now How to Make Sure You Do Not Feel Disgusting The Next day:
1.) Eat something. Commonly referred to as “soakage”, eating something before a night of drinking definitely helps to lessen the effects of a hangover. In fact, the more you eat, the more time it will take for the alcohol to affect you. This is because food helps to reduce the formation of acetaldehyde in your stomach, and it is this substance that is thought to be the main cause of hangovers. Fatty, carbohydrate-filled foods, such as pizza and pasta, are best for preventing hangovers, as fat slows your body’s absorption of alcohol. However, if you are trying to eat healthily, go for oily fish that contain healthy fatty acids, such as salmon, trout and mackerel.
2.) Take vitamins. Your body uses up a lot of vitamins and nutrients when metabolizing alcohol, while alcohol itself destroys essential B vitamins (especially thiamine and B12). Depleted of these vitamins, your body has a tough time whipping itself back into shape, leading to the dreaded hangover. You can help your poor liver out by taking a vitamin supplement leading up to any major drinking event. For the most effective results, opt for B complex, B6 or B12 vitamins.
Vitamin B supplements can be found in most drug stores and supermarkets, or you can increase your intake of B vitamins naturally by eating liver, meat and other animal products, such as milk and cheese.
3.) Have a spoon of olive oil. This may sound a little gross, but many Mediterranean cultures swear by this hangover prevention technique. Basically, it’s the same principle as eating fatty food before drinking – the fat in the olive oil will limit your body’s absorption of alcohol. So if you can stomach it, swallow a tablespoon of olive oil before you head out for the night. Alternatively, you can increase your intake of olive oil less directly by dipping some crusty bread into it, or drizzling it over a salad.
4.) Drink milk. Milk is often said to help prevent hangovers as it forms a coat on the lining of the stomach, which may help to limit the amount of alcohol that gets absorbed into your bloodstream. While there is little scientific evidence to back up the notion that milk helps to prevent a hangover, there are many people who swear by the method. If nothing else, milk is a healthy source of calcium and B vitamins, so drinking it can’t hurt.
5.) Alternate alcoholic drinks with water. Alcohol is a diuretic, which means that it makes you urinate more, leading to dehydration. Dehydration is one of the major causes of hangover symptoms like thirst, dizziness and headaches. Therefore, the more water you drink to rehydrate before, during and after drinking, the less severe your hangover is likely to be the next morning. Have a big glass of water before you start drinking, then try to drink a glass of water for every alcoholic drink that you have over the course of the night. Your body will thank you for it in the morning. Drinking water in between alcoholic drinks will also slow the speed of your alcohol consumption, preventing you from drinking too much too quickly. Your liver needs water to process alcohol. When you drink too much, your liver has to divert water from other organs like your brain. This is what causes the throbbing headache of a hangover, while alcohol irritates the lining of your stomach and causes nausea. Drinking also drains the body of vitamins and minerals, and reduces the quality of sleep.
6.) Sleep. When you go to bed drunk, your quality of sleep that night typically isn’t very good, leaving you feeling tired and groggy the next morning. After getting up, drinking some water and having some food, allow yourself to go back to bed for a nap, if possible. It will take your body several hours to metabolize the alcohol, so you might as well sleep through a couple of them and hopefully you’ll feel much better when you wake up!
7.) Sip ginger tea. Hangovers can sometimes come with a side of upset stomach. To settle that tummy, brew a warm mug of ginger tea. Ginger has been shown to help combat nausea .
8.) A glass of pure fruit juice or smoothie will also lift your blood sugar, and avoid the quick drop that high sugar fixes like pastries will bring. Fruit is packed with vitamin C, which helps your liver to process alcohol.
9.) Bloody it Up: The idea of using alcohol to neutralize alcohol may sound crude but it works. Now I mean specifically a bloody Mary please. This consists of a pint of vodka and tomatoe puree spiced to taste. The tomatoe also helps replace lostt vitamins and minerals and reduce the hangover. A Lot of people testify to the effectiveness of this method.
Take a Glass of Orange Juice: I believe the explanation behind this lies in the reaction between acids (citric acid in oranges) and the alcohol in your system to give an ester (Esterification).
Try not to take your paracetamol with tea or coffee: the combination of painkiller, caffeine and alcohol left in your system has the potential to damage your liver. Avoid aspirin and ibuprofen because they can worsen stomach irritation caused by alcohol.