Hangover Helpers - the Best and Worst

By Peach in Get in Style
Friday, March 2, 2012, 4:19pm. (Updated: 10/24/13 at 6:00pm) Add comments

Hangover Helpers

The Guide to What Works and What is a Myth

They say “death” and “taxes” are the only things that nobody escapes.  But since you are reading our Guide to DC Nightlife, the odds are you’ve dealt with a throbbing hangover at least once in your life.
Here are a few “morning after” aids that may provide some relief and keep you coming back those darned DC Clubs after all.

THE GOOD

Hydrate

Girl Drinking WaterBasically, a hangover is a side effect of being dehydrated.

Wish you didn’t drink so many Long Islands last night?

To help clear out the toxins, it’s always a good idea to drink plenty of water before, during and after imbibing of your favorite spirit.

Late Night Eats

A good meal can do wonders, particularly if you have it while drinking.  But there’s still hope the next morning.

Eggs contain amino acids, which in theory could help the liver breakdown the toxins from the previous night’s abuse.

Check out our Guide to The Best Late Night Food in DC.

Coconut Water and/or Bananas

Coconut WaterWhen you get dehydrated, you lose not only water but also electrolytes, including potassium. Too little potassium can lead to cramps, fatigue, nausea, dizziness and heart palpitations.

Both of these foods are loaded with potassium and putting nutrients back into your system can provide quick relief.

Tea with Honey and Ginger

Tea cupGinger is a natural nausea fighter and honey contains fructose, which helps alcohol get broken down faster.

The trio is also overflowing with antioxidants, which can guard against some of the inflammation and damage, especially to your brain or what little of it you have left after partying hard!

Sex

SexNobody will fight about this one.

“There is no research that shows that sex will make a hangover go away, but maybe it will make the time go faster,” says Joris C. Verster, Ph.D., assistant professor at Utrecht University in the Netherlands.

But if it makes you happy, go for it.

Sleep

Asleep on booksSleep is the best cure, but unless it’s Sunday or your unemployed, this could be a luxury.

No matter what you try, hangovers can only be avoided by not drinking a lot — well, at least until scientists get their act together and create a hangover pill.

Exercise

ExercisingWho wants to get off the couch and exercise while you feel like you are on your deathbed?

Regardless, exercise can release endorphins.  Just make sure to stay hydrated before getting on that stairmaster or you may be near your real deathbed in the blink of an eye.

THE BAD

Hair of the Dog

Dog Drinking at BarThis one is pretty much bullsh*t, but it does help.

Drinking a little more alcohol in the morning — be it a bloody Mary or otherwise — might provide the mild numbing effect to ease you back.

Ultimately you’re just prolonging your misery.

Anything with “Hangover” in the Name

Hangover PillsIf it says it cures hangovers, it doesn’t cure hangovers.

The best part of these pills and powders is the water you’re drinking to chase them down.  Some products recommend a full glass with each dose.

The more water the better.  Yet none of these potions are more effective than a multivitamin, which itself is only marginally useful.

Headache Pills

Since your liver just took a beating like Rodney King, adding acetaminophen to the mix is like kicking someone when they are down. Acetaminophen is by far the most common cause of liver failure in the United States. When combined with alcohol, it can be deadly.

Instead, try Tiger Balm — a popular topical blended from camphor, menthol, cajuput oil and clove oil that’s known for its analgesic and blood flow promoting properties.

Aspirin can be helpful before sleep and upon rising with plenty of water, but only in moderation.

Coffee

CoffeeCongratulations!

You’re now awake and more intensely aware of your hangover symptoms and that’s about all.

Coffee is a diuretic, making you even more dehydrated and increasing the severity of the hangover.  When the caffeine wears off, you will be even more tired.

Propranolol

Throwing money in toiletPropranolol is beta-blocker drug for hypertension that also is commonly used to relieve hangover pain.

The bad news is that it doesn’t work, according to numerous studies.  The good news is that you wasted your money on Propranolol instead of more booze.

THE UGLY

Haejangguk

Korean bowl of soupIn English, this Korean dish literally means “soup for the stomach.” Street vendors in Korea sell it out of carts, usually on weekend mornings.

The ingredients are enough to make weak stomachs vomit and include cow bones and cow’s blood, along with a collection of spices that would make most Westerners cringe.

Mustard Bath

Mustard BathThey say soaking in mustard can cure a hangover, but we’re not advising you should spread it all over your body like a hot dog.

Health food stores sell a powder form or bath salts infused with the powder which can help suck the toxins out of your bloated body like a vacuum.

Soak in Wasabi

Wasabi BathTreat your body like your favorite sushi!

As much as a third of toxic body waste is cleared through the skin. When infused into the bath, wasabi’s stimulating nature has been known to help ease a hangover.

Just make sure to wash off well after before trying the sex cure.

Yoga

Yoga poseThink of it like wringing your body out like a wet towel.

Perfect as a post-party liver purge, twisting yoga poses help to squeeze the alcohol out of the organs.

Pickle Juice

Snooki pickle juiceWe are not suggesting you take a cue from Snooki, but the salt in the water helps you retain water.

For the severely dehydrated every little bit helps!

Hopefully you won’t turn into an oompa loompa.

2 Responses to “Hangover Helpers – the Best and Worst”

  1. Todd says:

    Hot bowl of Pho needs to be on the top of the good list

  2. ha, great tips. haven’t heard about Wasabi being used to cure a hangover… not sure how that would work? :S

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