Drank too much last night? Head aches, mouth dry, you are nauseous? That’s a hangover for sure. But why does that happen? Let’s see scientifically why hangovers occcur and how to cure them.
The hangover is caused by a combination of the toxic by-product of alcohol metabolism (acetaldehyde), dehydration, and Vitamin A, B (particularly B6) and C depletion brought about by the chemical action of alcohol on your system.
Some drinks give you worse hangovers than others due to the actions of impurities it contains. These impurities are called congeners. It’s the ethyl alcohol (ethanol) that gets you drunk, but the amyl, butyl, methyl, propyl, and isopropyl alcohols that are also found in most drinks (more or less), and the concentration of these congeners determine how bad your hangover will be.
The white (clear) spirits have less congeners than the colored ones (vodka, gin, tequila as opposed to whisky and cognac) as they are filtered. Another special “impurity” which really gives you a sick feeling after drinking is acetaldehyde, a by-product of the natural oxidation of ethanol. This is usually contributing to the super headache one feels.
What can be done about it?
There are lots of cures from folklore and each country and culture seems to have their own. Below you can read the result of exhaustive research, and popularity of cures among the published articles found worldwide.
Special Rule: If you forget to at night, take two oils containing Isobruphen. There are several names for this medicine, but do NOT take aspirin or other similar medicines. Only Isobuphen appears to work, and other painkillers with acetaminophen can damage your liver.
General Rule: Often called “hair of the dog that bite you”. a Bloody Mary cocktail seems to bring you back to normal. In conjunction with Isobuphen, a Bloody Mary can work quite dramatically. Here is my recipe, taken from a famous Japanese restaurant in New York;
o One shotglass of vodka (use the best you can find)
o Dash of lemon juice
o Worcestershire sauce
o 2 or 3 drops Tabasco sauce or more if you can handle it
o Pepper, salt and celery salt
o 5 oz tomato juice
Over ice in a tall glass add spices, then vodka.
Fill with tomato juice and stir.
Garnish with celery stick and lime wedge.
1. Take a hot shower
2. Do deep breathing exercises in front of an open window
3. Walk in place till your heartbeat is about 115 beats per minute then stop
4. As you feel better, drink lots of pure clean water
5. Eat bananas. Bananas contain high volumes of fructose, and and potassium, which is one of the things you lose lots of when you drink. Bananas are also a natural antacid to help with the nausea, and are high in magnesium which can help relax those pounding blood vessels causing that hangover headache.
Obviously one would not like to drink too much and suffer the consequences of a hangover the next day, but following the rules above will alleviate most or all of the symptoms.