There’s No Magic Pill for a Hangover, But This May Help

Excess drinking on New Year’s Eve can contribute to an awful morning after, with no sure-fire cure available. But helpful methods for dealing with a hangover do exist.

Hangover Symptoms

Hangover symptoms — a headache, nausea, and vertigo — arise when the body withdraws from alcohol and a chemical called acetaldehyde is formed, Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, stated in a hospital report release.

The only “remedy” at present is to not drink in the first place. Glatter said that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not recommended any cures for a hangover and isn’t likely to do so anytime soon.

Instead, he provided these tips:

Drink in moderation, and eat before you drink. That’s because the food will limit the absorption of the alcohol. A meal with large levels of protein and fat may do an especially good job of limiting the alcohol absorption process.

Snack throughout the evening and night to slow the absorption of alcohol. This further helps maintain your blood sugar levels stable.

Be cautious around darker alcohols, such as red wine, bourbon, and whiskey. They contain more harmful chemicals, called congeners, that are made during the fermentation process. These can heighten the risk of a hangover headache.

To lessen the impact of a hangover headache, take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory painkiller before going to bed. Examples are aspirin, Advil, and Aleve.

Drink slowly and make every other drink a non-alcoholic beverage, like water. Also consider drinks like Powerade and Gatorade, which can replace your body’s electrolyte levels. If you develop a hangover headache, try drinking the soft drink Sprite, which consists of a compound called taurine that may be beneficial.

There’s one other significant factor to remember the morning after: Watch out for caffeine because caffeinated drinks can raise your heart rate and worsen dehydration, Glatter said.

Slideshow: 12 hangover ‘remedies’ exposed

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