Believe it or not, we are still unsure why we get hangovers. A couple of theories include that our bodies are suffering from alcohol withdrawal (hence the hair of the dog Bloody Mary concoctions) or that the fault lies with alcohol’s poisonous by-products.
Whatever the cause, here are some new fads, tried and tested recipes and body-conning tricks because, let’s face it, ‘I am never drinking again’ is a shameful lie.
Line your stomach with dairy and fatty foods. This will to slow down the absorption of alcohol in to the body. Mediterraneans claim a spoonful of olive oil does the trick.
Stock up on vitamins. Make sure you eat a banana or an orange to limit nutrient loss and replenish your soon-to-be-depleted potassium levels.
Rehydrate. Remember to keep drinking water or a soft drink in between your pints of beer, glasses of wine or cocktails. Alcohol is a diuretic so peeing more than usual will leaving your body dehydrated. If you forget, a pint of water before bed will help.
Beware of dark drinks. There will be more congeners and therefore harmful byproducts contained in darker drinks so expect a heavier hangover if you knock back port, red wine or dark rums.
The Morning After…
A new over-the-counter remedy in the US claims to deliver pain relief from the effects of a hangover in 15 minutes. The ‘Blowfish’ pill is a combination of aspirin and caffeine and was developed by an ex-financier who has no pharmaceutical background.
Brenna Haysom says he tried hundreds of home recipes before perfecting the latest combination which he began sharing with friends and was soon in high demand to alleviate nausea, vomiting and fatigue.
The pill launched in the US last year and will soon be introduced in the UK costing £1.90 for a single dose and £7.60 for a pack of six. Tried it? Tell us if this is the new miracle cure in the comments below!
Save your Bacon
True, there will be days when you absolutely cannot face eating anything. But even for those of you dangling dangerously close to the precipice, TRY and eat a bacon sandwich. You can drink as much water as you like, but you need to balance out your salt and sugar levels too and this has, on many occasions, totally cured me. And I have science to back this on up. Apparently the amino acid in bacon helps produce neurotransmitters to clear a hazy head.
Also a firm favourite providing salts, sugars and the amino acid found in eggs help soak up acetaldehyde. Accompanied by a glass of fresh orange juice to raise your blood sugar levels, this meal, if you are not too passed it, will get you through the day.
Dry mouth? I’ve often found comfort in a glass of coke, even better if left to go flat. You will be craving sugar too but try to resist reaching for sugary soft drinks. Research shows that any feeling of feeling rehydrated and energised will be a short-lived cure and will in fact cause you to crash shortly after. Instead, stick to a watered down fruit juice or water.
Guilty Pleasure Telly
Make a date on the sofa with your favourite TV show reruns. It doesn’t matter if you nod off because you have seen them all before! Time really is the best healer so a doze will help fast forward the hangover effects making full speed to the recovery stage!
Hair of the Dog
A controversial cure which might make you feel temporarily better but can in fact prolong the effects of a hangover. Hair of the dog first appeared in the middle ages when the Medical School of Salerno recommended: “If an evening of wine does you in/More the next morning will be medicine.”
Personally I am ‘for’ a Bloody Mary with its kickstart Worcester sauce ingredient and a celery stick to numbly chomp on can help revitalise the somewhat dulled senses. Similarly a Bucks Fizz (Champagne or sparkling wine and orange juice) has a suggestion of vitamin c and the bubbles will reawaken suffering taste buds.
Around the World
Travellers, when in Rome…so if you’re away from home and throwing some bacon in the pan is not an option, here is what might be closer at hand if you are struggling to cope with a hangover abroad…
A steaming cup of miso soup will provide your body with nutrient comforts including salts and fluid loss.
Strong coffee might help cure the fatigue effect, but who wants to wake up to a terrible hangover! A hangover is a sign of dehydration and caffeine causes dehydration. Hmmm.
Butcher Andy Sinclair recently created a sausage whereby he replaced the water with Irn-Bru. He claims this could make a great hangover cure and they have been flying off the shelves.
Something for the weekend, street vendors sell a special ‘soup for the stomach’ on Saturday and Sunday mornings targeting weekend revellers. It is made with cow bones, vegetables, coagulated ox blood and cabbage.
Eggs Benedict is in fact the creation of New York socialite Samuel Benedict who, while staying at the Waldorf Astoria in 1894, asked staff to throw together what he believed would be the ultimate hangover cure: an English muffin topped with either bacon or ham, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce.
Tell us your favourite hangover cure!
Thanks to Charles Haynes, bschmove, Andres Rueda, Toms Bauģis and kthread for the Flickr photos! Please note, all images were suitable for use at the time of publication according to the Creative Commons license.
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