Did you have a little too much fun over the holidays? Maybe you suffered a New Years Day hangover!?
What is a hangover?
Alcohol, a diuretic, can lead to dehydration which accounts for many of the symptoms of a hangover1,2! Sleep disturbance and low blood sugar, both associated with a night of drinking, may also contribute to a hangover. As noted by Alberta Health Services, symptoms of a hangover may include headache, stomach discomfort, “fuzzy thinking”, drowsiness or sweating.1
Although some may argue that “eat is cheating”, there are some tips for avoiding/minimizing a hangover from the UK’s National Health Service (NHS):1
- To slow down the absorption of alcohol have a meal that include carbs and fats
- Avoid dark-coloured drinks which can irritate blood vessels and tissues in the brain
- Avoid carbonated drinks which speed up the absorption of alcohol
- Before going to bed keep a glass of water at your bedside to sip during the night.
“Curing” the Hangover
There are numerous “cures” offered for the hangover – from drinking pickle juice, consuming greasy food and coffee, to continuing drinking (“hair of the dog”)3,4; however, these are largely considered myths. Rather than seeking a cure, your best bet may be to rehydrate! Drink water to help replenish lost fluids and have a nap to restore your strength!
1 National Health Service. 2014. Hangover Cures. Accessed 09 Dec 2015, from http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/alcohol/Pages/Hangovers.aspx
2 Alberta Health Services. Alcohol and Health, Alcohol Hangover. Accessed 09 Dec 2015 from http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/assets/info/hp/edu/if-hp-edu-amh-alcohol-hangover.pdf
3 Readers Digest. 5 Questionable Hangover Cures From Around the World. Accessed 09 Dec 2015 http://www.rd.com/health/wellness/hangover-cures-around-the-world/
4Harding, Anne. 10 Hangover Remedies: What Works?. Accessed: 09 Dec 2015 from http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20452426,00.html.