Going out and partying it up is just a lot of fun. Throwing back some cold ones with your friends or lining up the glasses at the bar is a good way to blow of some steam after a grueling week of work. If only we didn’t have to pay for it the next day. You know you’ve partied too hard when you wake up with the dreaded hangover. There is the pounding in your head like a thousand spikes being driven in, the rolling stomach, and the feeling that if the world ended, you are not sure you would care. Hangovers have been a plague on partygoers for as long as alcohol has existed and there have been a number of supposed cures and remedies to get rid of one. If you want to know how to cure a hangover, you need to know the awful truth. The truth is that there is no instant cure for a hangover that will make you feel better. But there are some methods you can use to help you get through it. Hopefully you will read this before you go out drinking so that you can be better prepared. Here’s what you need to know.
What Causes Hangovers
Yeah, I know, drinking causes hangovers but it is more than that. There are many factors involved that all combine to make you miserable. Alcohol dehydrates your body. When your body reaches a certain state of dehydration, the symptoms are very similar to a hangover. Also, alcohol brakes down the energy that is stored up in your liver. It is very much akin to hypoglycemia, when your blood sugar content gets low. Another factor in hangovers is that your body breaks alcohol down into two parts: acetaldehyde and acetate. Acetaldehyde is said to cause sweating, nausea, and vomiting. It also takes a while before it works its way out of your body. Besides all of this, alcohol can irritate your bowels, causing an upset stomach and also interferes with sleep, preventing you from getting a good night’s rest. Sleeping allows the body to recover from things such as illnesses and injuries. If you don’t get enough rest, you won’t recover fast enough.
What To Do Before You Drink
Make sure you drink plenty of water before you start with the hard stuff. Your body suffers enough from dehydration due to the alcohol. If you are already dehydrated before you start, the after effects will only be worse.
Vitamin B6 has been proven to help lessen hangovers. Before you go out, take 50 milligrams of the vitamin. When you get home after a party, take 50 more milligrams. If you are not sure you will remember, put the vitamins next to the bed or somewhere you will see them before you crash. Be careful not to take too many, though. Too much Vitamin B6 can be toxic is you overdose.
What Drinks Should You Avoid
Congeners are chemicals in alcoholic drinks that make hangovers worse. Usually, the darker the alcoholic drink, the more congeners it contains. The more congeners, the worse the hangover. So unless you like the feeling of that splitting headache, you should try to avoid drinks that are really dark. Some drinks that will have the worse effect on you are whiskey, rum, brandy, tequila, and dark beer. Oddly enough, champagne is said to also be one of the worst drinks for hangovers. Some experts claim that the cheap stuff is worse for you so if you must drink, try to stick with the higher-grade drinks.
Never, ever start mixing different types of drinks. Try to stick with one type of drink through the night or at least keep them similar. For some reason, if you start drinking a wide variety of drinks such as having a beer then chasing it with a shot of tequila followed by a glass of champagne, the different alcohol contents will likely make you sick.
If You Can Remember This
So by now you have gone out and had a great time, had plenty to drink, and finally stumbled home (hopefully having a sober driver drop you off). Now is the time to take that Vitamin B6 that you left waiting for yourself. There are also a few things you should do before you collapse fully clothed on your bed. Drink a glass of orange juice because it will help speed up your liver to process the alcohol. If you can, you should also eat a light snack before bedtime. The food will help because it will prevent hypoglycemia in the morning. Do not take any medication that warns against mixing with alcohol. That can create a whole new set of problems. Save the Tylenol for in the morning. That is when you are going to need it. Taking it before bed will do no good.
The Dreaded Morning
When morning finally comes, you can expect to feel bad to some degree. Hopefully you will have lessened the potential of how bad you could have felt. Basically, sleep is the best thing for you. Try to sleep in and let your body recover. You should drink plenty of water. You will be dehydrated no matter how much water you had the day before. If you are thirsty and want something besides water, try some juice or non-caffeine soft drinks. Avoid coffee and other drinks with strong amounts of caffeine. This will only upset your stomach more. If you can, eat something. Stick to very light meals such as cereal or a bagel. Anything greasy will not be good for an upset stomach. Now is the time to take that Tylenol that you didn’t take last night. Do all of this and then go back to bed. Don’t get up until you start to feel better.
Other Common Remedies
Everyone has their own version or home remedy for hangovers. Some people swear that waking up and taking another alcoholic drink, called ‘hair of the dog’, will cure a hangover. The exact type of drink varies but some people take a shot of whiskey, a beer, or a Bloody Mary.
Cold showers are another common remedy. The theory is that the cold water hitting your nervous system will wake you up and get rid of any grogginess. It will definitely get you shivering.
Some of the stranger cures from around the world include drinking pickle which is common in Poland. In Ireland, it was believed that burying a hangover victim up to the neck in river sand. I don’t know if this actually helped but it probably gave the people doing the burying a laugh. In China, a very strong green tea is used while in Romania, they prefer tripe soup. Tripe, by the way, is cow’s stomach. If the thought of eating that doesn’t get you to drink moderately, I don’t know what will.
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