Waking up with a hangover can be a very unpleasant experience. Although there are many potential hangover remedies, this blog will highlight some of the ones you should avoid and common hangover myths. Additionally, we will explore the causes and symptoms of a hangover and alternative options for a hangover remedy.
Hangover Causes and Symptoms
Hangover symptoms usually begin when your blood alcohol concentration drops to zero or close to zero. The morning following a night of excessive drinking, symptoms are generally in full force. You may notice the following, dependent on what and how much alcohol is consumed:
- Weakness and fatigue
- Muscle pains and headaches
- Hangover nausea, vomiting, or stomach discomfort
- Poor or reduced sleep
- An elevated heartbeat
There are many causes of a hangover, and below are some of the most common ones:
Mild dehydration – Alcohol decreases the release of vasopressin, a brain hormone that sends signals to the kidneys, causing them to retain fluid. Alcohol promotes increased urination and fluid loss because of this. The mild dehydration that results is likely to lead to hangover symptoms such as thirst, drowsiness, and headaches.
Sleep disruption – People who consume alcohol may fall asleep faster, but their sleep is interrupted, and they tend to wake up earlier. This leads to exhaustion and lower productivity.
Gastrointestinal irritation – Alcohol irritates the stomach lining and promotes acid production. This can cause hangover nausea, and stomach pains.
Inflammation – Inflammation in the body is exacerbated by alcohol. Inflammation has a role in the malaise that individuals experience when they are unwell, so it may also be a factor in hangover symptoms.
Below are some of the most common hangover myths and remedies you should avoid.
- Eating greasy food: A large breakfast may cause indigestion, making you feel even worse, especially if you are not used to eating this type of food. The fatty foods will aggravate an already irritated gastrointestinal tract. Although fruit is probably the last thing on your mind after a night out, studies claim it can help you feel better sooner by restoring blood sugar levels that drop when you consume alcohol. Honey on toast, which is easier to digest, may also help if you are craving carbohydrates.
- Hair of the dog: This is an approach where an individual drinks more alcohol to relieve a hangover. Although a morning buzz seems appealing compared to a splitting headache and dizziness, drinking when you are hungover just delays the onset of hangover symptoms, which will undoubtedly occur once you stop drinking. Furthermore, it is a common misperception that hangovers are caused by withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms tend to intensify with time and primarily affect people who are dependent on alcohol. On the other hand, hangover symptoms improve with time, water, and a good night’s sleep.
- Drinking coffee: Caffeine lowers swollen blood vessels, which play a role in migraines, while the alcohol you consume simultaneously boosts your blood pressure, making coffee potentially intensify a pounding headache. However, a small amount of coffee might give some relief, so consider reducing your usual coffee serving instead of ordering a venti. The inability to operate normally is typically one of the side effects of a hangover. Coffee can help you concentrate, but it has diuretic effects. Before you drink your coffee, you should consume a lot of water. Additionally, you must have this beverage after eating. Otherwise, your gastrointestinal tract will be irritated.
- Staying in bed: Simply staying in bed is not very productive – it is recommended that you sleep instead. According to research, people who have had a large amount of alcohol go to bed around two hours later than people who are sober. Instead of lying in bed, it would be more beneficial to sleep for an extra two hours. You can also consider doing some physical exercise as soon as you wake up to help you feel better. According to studies, exercise releases endorphins, the body’s natural analgesic, and promotes circulation. This enables oxygen to reach your cells and enhances your mental attitude.
- Pain relievers: Since most over-the-counter painkillers require 30 minutes to set in and provide maximum benefits one to two hours later, the effects are likely to wear off before you feel hungover, if not before you wake up. Alcohol increases gastric acid output, which can cause significant stomach irritation. However, several over-the-counter pain relievers, including aspirin and ibuprofen, might disturb your stomach lining, meaning that taking pain relievers ahead of time may cause more harm than good. You should wait to analyze your symptoms in the morning. If you suffer from a severe headache, a pharmaceutical fix may help. It is recommended to stay away from acetaminophen-containing medicines, which, like alcohol, can put a strain on the liver.
Hangover Remedies that Work
There are various things you may do to alleviate a hangover. For those searching for a hangover remedy, below are five options to consider.
- Have nutritious food: Depending on the sort of food ingested, you must consider which vitamins are beneficial to your energy levels. Those meals can help you recover from a hangover. It is best to eat mineral- and protein-rich meals. For example, you can start with a basic snack like crackers or bread. Carbohydrates assist in regulating blood sugar levels and reduce tremors and dizziness. Fruits and vegetables are a good choice too.
- Try ginger: Ginger is one of the most effective natural remedies for stomach pains and hangover symptoms. One of the causes of hangover nausea is stomach lining inflammation. Ginger’s chemical components help with stomach discomfort and indigestion, along with hangover nausea. This superfood may be consumed in a variety of ways. To ease stomach discomfort, try drinking ginger tea or adding raw ginger to smoothies.
- Drink lots of water: Alcohol causes excessive urination and fluid loss. Hangover symptoms such as thirst, tiredness, and headaches are likely to occur due to dehydration. It is beneficial to replace part of your alcoholic beverages with water since this helps prevent dehydration. Also, if you are consuming fizzy alcoholic beverages like champagne, it is best to drink slowly. By competing with oxygen absorption, carbon dioxide bubbles can expedite the absorption of alcohol in circulation.
- Take vitamins: The vitamins in your body are rapidly depleted after a night of drinking. It is essential to identify which vitamins are best for your brain and aid in energy production. The most basic approach to getting enough vitamin C is to drink orange juice. B vitamins and zinc may even help to alleviate hangover symptoms. If you have a multivitamin on hand, this could be an excellent time to start taking it.
- Use hangover supplements: Hangover supplements refer to various natural substances that can help with a hangover. This includes specific ingredients with anti-hangover properties like vitamins, amino acids, and herbal extracts. Antioxidants in hangover supplements neutralize the toxic by-products of alcohol metabolism and reduce inflammation. Furthermore, vitamins help your liver break down alcohol and its by-products, making them an efficient hangover remedy.
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It is important to consider various options to find the best hangover remedy. This blog has covered five of the most common hangover myths and remedies that you should avoid. These include eating greasy food, the hair of the dog approach, drinking coffee, staying in bed, and taking pain relievers. Instead, having nutritious food like ginger, taking vitamins and hangover supplements, and staying hydrated all serve as a great hangover remedy.