Hangovers suck! Waking up after a night of drinking to headaches, nausea, and pain is the worst. But, there are some tips and tricks that can help you to minimize the damage. From staying hydrated to taking in the right supplements. There are many options out there for hangover cures and stabilizers. Here are just a few of the most well-known options.
DRINK WATER, FOLKS! This is something everyone should be doing before, during, and after drinking. The reason being, drinking alcohol increases the rate that you pee. Scientifically, this is because you increase of vasopressin, a hormone that decreases the volume of urine made by the kidneys. But that’s not the only body function being messed with by the alcohol you drink. Your hangover can also include diarrhea, sweating, or vomiting. All of this means that you’re increasing the chance of getting dehydrated. That will then make you thirsty, have fatigue, have worse headaches, or get dizzy.
How can you combat this? DRINK WATER. A good rule to establish is to alternate drinking water and alcohol as you go from drink to drink. Then when the night is over, make sure to have a cup of water in arms reach of where you sleep. Drink that cup before you go to bed, have a re-fill on hand while you’re sleeping, and drink a full cup when you wake up.
2. Coconut Water
But water isn’t the only liquid that can support you through a hangover. Coconut water is also a good option.
First, coconut water is loaded with sugars and electrolytes like potassium. By drinking coconut water, you are replenishing your body with the nutrients you need to live.
Coconut water doesn’t just fill you with the good, but it helps you get rid of the bad too. Drinking coconut water encourages your bowel movements, boosts immune function, and prevents bacterial/viral infections.
But while you want something to replenish you of the nutrients and water that alcohol has soaked up, you want to EAT something that soaks up any remaining alcohol. Because drinking lowers sugar levels, you get headaches and a lack of energy. In order to reverse that, eat. Carbohydrates are a great way to stock up a good defense, if you will, against the onslaught of alcoholic intruders.
Just be mindful, though not fearful, of the fact that you might end up devouring more carbs than you normally would when sober. It’s all about moderation… in what you drink and in what you eat.
4. B Vitamins and Zinc
But what other nutrients do you need to restock? Vitamins B and Zinc!
A 2019 study published in the Journal of Clinical Medicine looked into diets 24 hours before and after drinking excessively. While working with a small sample size, the study’s researchers assessed overall hangover severity. In the end, the results found that people whose food and drinks contained large amounts of zinc and B vitamins had less severe hangovers.
So, what foods and drinks have high amounts of B vitamins and zinc? For both, eat whole grains like brown rice or barley, red meat, eggs, legumes, or seeds and nuts, or dark, leafy vegetables. There are many options!
From nutrients and vitamins to supplements. Through studies, researchers have found that the following supplements are also great hangover cures. Consume or drink these bad boys and you are setting yourself up for a better time post-drinking.
- Korean Pear: A 2004 study found that Korean pears or prickly pear extract can decrease hangover symptoms.
- Ginger: Another study said the same thing about ginger when consumed with brown sugar and tangerine extract.
- Red Ginseng: Taking red ginseng can help reduce blood alcohol levels and thus lower the severity of your hangover. At least, that’s what another study once said.
- Borage Oil: Next, Borage oil. One study found that the effectiveness of a supplement combining the prickly pear explained above and borage oil, oil from sunflower seeds, can help reduce hangover symptoms by 88%!
- Eleuthero: Lastly, eleuthero extract, which is a sort of ginseng from Siberia, was also found to also lower symptoms and help your body to recover.
6. Pain Relievers
Now, we move onto the hangover cures that aren’t the best recommendations. These are the ideas that include unnatural substances going into your body. But let’s start with the idea that’s less harmful: pain relievers.
When all the natural options like extracts, water, and so on are not helping you out, it’s time to pull out the ibuprofen and aspirin. These drugs can help relieve an irritated stomach. Plus, you can get rid of that pounding headache. Be careful, however, how much you take. Pain relievers can actually increase a person’s nausea. Also avoid acetaminophen, as it can worsen the hangover and its bad effects on your liver.
7. Hair Of The Dog
Lastly, there’s the hair of the dog.
We’ve left this tip for last because we want you to read it with EXTREME CAUTION. While it is an option for you, we don’t want anyone to become reliant on this option. That could and would create some clear complications and dependencies that should not be incorporated into your drinking life.
While based largely on myth, there is some scientifically proven legitimacy to the idea of drinking again while hungover. This is because when you drink alcohol, methanol is processed in your body. That methanol is then converted into formaldehyde, which is toxic and causes hangovers. But if you drink more alcohol, it can stop that conversion and prevent formaldehyde from forming.
But here’s the thing. Sometimes, you’re not eliminating the risk of getting a hangover. You’re just prolonging it. In addition, this tactic can create some pretty UNHEALTHY habits. This idea just perpetuates a cycle and doesn’t allow you to recover.
In the end, there is no perfect hangover cure. But with the help of scientific studies and experiences from those who’ve come before us, we have these above ideas on how to handle the ever-terrible hangover. Which method is your favorite? Which one is pointless in your opinion? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments below.