Everyone knows that the best way to avoid a hangover is to not drink any alcohol, but this is something that is easier said than done. A hangover is not a pleasant experience, with symptoms ranging from simple discomfort to severe headaches and nausea. Everyone tries to deal with hangovers the way they think best, and most people have their own remedy or tricks for a speedy recovery.
Even if you aren't someone who drinks regularly, you a more than likely going to end up with a hangover at some point. Recently, there have been lots of new products coming out, offering different methods of curing hangovers. These remedies often contain vitamins and minerals, which the body needs after a big night of drinking. In this guide, we show you the best hangover cures currently available on the market, that could be your savior in your time of need.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 Key Facts
- 3 Ranking: The best hangover cures
- 4 Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about hangover cures
- 5 Shopping Criteria
- 6 Summary
- The duration and intensity of hangovers is not simply related to the amount of alcohol that has been consumed. Weight, age and factors such metabolism have a more direct effect. With age we metabolize alcohol less efficiently and have hangovers that last longer.
- The best thing for a hangover is rest. The symptoms, no matter how bad, will disappear within 24 hours. After you have consumed alcohol, even if you don't feel like you have a hangover, your body is still affected. Your ability to pay attention and capacity to concentrate are lower, so you need to be careful if driving - especially if your blood alcohol level may still be over the legal limit.
- Green vegetables, such as artichokes and asparagus, and fruit help to metabolize alcohol. These foods strengthen the liver's ability to purify itself, and help to eliminate toxins from the body. Supplement one of these remedies with some juice and vegetable broth to eliminate the worst effects of a hangover.
Ranking: The best hangover cures
There are many type of hangover remedies, some traditional, some organic, and more recently commercial products have become widely available. We do not guarantee that with one of these supplements the effects of a hangover will magically disappear, but you will definitely feel much better. Here is a list of the most effective hangover remedies on the market:
Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about hangover cures
Before rushing out and buying any hangover cure product, you first need to understand what a hangover is and what it is caused by. You won't be able choose the most effective remedy, if you don't have any background information about these products. In this section, we answer to the most frequently asked questions people have about hangovers and their remedies.
What is a hangover?
The human body does not metabolize alcohol, since it actually acts like a poison in our system. Alcohol passes through the liver that is responsible for deactivating alcohol toxins (ethanol).
The liver does not produce enzymes that neutralize ethanol, so it transforms it instead into acitaldehyde, which is more toxic than alcohol and produces the symptoms of a hangover.
Why do we get drunk?
After a big night of drinking alcohol, the body will have to cope with two very toxic substances for hours: alcohol and acetaldehyde. If you have a full stomach the absorption rate of ethanol is slower, which gives the liver more time to metabolize the alcohol. This is why alcohol affects us much more on an empty stomach.
How does alcohol affect us?
The effects of alcohol are increased when it is consumed in excessive quantities. At high levels of consumption behavior becomes altered, and sometimes people make inappropriate comments or act differently to how they would normally. At extreme levels, acetaldehyde can cause a coma, and the inhibition of the nervous system resulting in death.
|Level of alcohol||Effects|
|Small||Neural stimulation, facilitates social interactions, euphoria, loss of concentration and decreased coordination|
|High||Decreased ability to concentrate, inappropriate comments and actions, lack of motor coordination, lethargy and sleepiness|
|Extremely high||Total loss of memory, coma, inhibition of the nervous system, respiratory system failure and even death|
What are the symptoms of a hangover?
- Mild amnesia or loss of memory about what happened while under the effects of alcohol
- Nausea, including vomiting in severe cases
- Dehydration and extreme thirst
- Headaches caused by the dehydration of the meninges (membranes encasing the brain and spinal cord), dilation of the blood vessels and decreased levels of glucose
How can I avoid a hangover?
Drinking slowly and eating foods rich in protein and carbohydrates, will decrease the rate of alcohol absorption via the intestine. This will give the liver extra time to metabolize the alcohol that is being consumed. You should ideally eat before you start drinking and be sure to drink enough water along with the alcohol. A good idea is to drink one glass of water for every alcoholic beverage you consume. Remember that responsible alcohol consumption is always the best solution.
Do all alcoholic drinks cause hangovers?
If you consume alcohol faster than it can be metabolized by your liver, the risk of a hangover increases.
Darker drinks such as whiskey, red wine, tequila or cognac cause worse hangovers. White wine, beer and clear drinks such as vodka or gin are less harmful. However, this doesn't mean that gin or vodka won't cause a hangover. As we mentioned previously, all alcoholic beverages cause hangovers when consumed in excessive amounts.
How can I cure a hangover?
That being said, there are some things that definitely work for everyone. The most important thing to remember is to drink water while you are consuming alcohol. Every time you go to the bathroom, drink a glass of water or have a soda. It is also best to drink a lot of liquids when you wake up. Isotonic sports drinks and coffee are ideal for recovering lost minerals. The most important thing is to hydrate yourself and rest.
What foods are best to eat when suffering from a hangover?
Lots of foods are able to replenish minerals and lessen the damage caused to our digestive system. Of course, it is most important to replenish fluids. Drinking a lot of water is always a great idea, but drinking juices is even better. The body needs to replace the electrolytes and minerals lost during the consumption of alcohol. Coffee is also a good remedy, as a diuretic it will help to flush out the alcohol.
This table presents some of the most beneficial foods to help cure a hangover:
|Water||Rehydrates and reduces headaches|
|Mango, grapes, watermelon, bananas||Replenish lost glucose and help to eliminate alcohol from the body faster|
|Asparagus||Help to metabolize alcohol, and contain amino acids and minerals effective against a hangover, which also protect liver cells from the harmful effects of alcohol|
|Isotonic sports drinks, skim milk, coconut water, salt water||Rehydrate and replenishe lost electrolytes|
|Salmon, eggs||Replenish vitamins B6 and B12|
|Ginger||Relieves nausea, dizziness and stomach upsets|
|Rice||Restores energy, corrects blood sugar balance, and relieves stomach discomfort by absorbing fluids and improving digestion|
|Oats|| Neutralize body acids,
regulate iron levels, contain calcium and magnesium and are a natural diuretic
|Cocoa||Replenishes vitamins and minerals, prevents gastrointestinal disorders, regenerates intestinal flora, is a natural isotonic and contains vitamin B|
|Leafy greens||Natural source of vitamin A, E and K, rich in iodine, protect the mucous membrane of the stomach and have anti-inflammatory properties|
|Oranges||Help to detox the kidneys and liver and have a diuretic action|
|Apples||They protect the kidneys and liver, have high levels of potassium, neutralize acids and relieve gastrointestinal problems|
|Honey||Detoxes the metabolism, balances the level of glucose in the blood and is a source of potassium|
|Olive oil||Protects the liver, neutralizes the harmful effect of gastric acids and prevents reflux|
When choosing the hangover cure you are going to purchase, it is important that you evaluate the different products available on the market. In this section, we explain the most important factors you should consider to make sure you get the hangover cure that is best for you. Don't rush out and just buy the first one you see, there are many different remedies out there. These are the most important criteria you should keep in mind when making your choice:
Most hangover cures are formulated from natural elements. These days, many people want to buy organic products, while vegans and vegetarians need take into account the source of the ingredients in a product before making a purchase. People with allergies such as gluten or lactose intolerance, should also check the contents to make sure it safe for them to take.
If it is important for you to know where the ingredients contained in products you consume are sourced from, choose an organic remedy. Hangover cures are most commonly made with organic, plant-based compounds anyway. Some ingredients, such as activated carbon capsules, are manufactured in laboratories. There is a wide-range of different products containing different ingredients, so you should have no trouble finding one that suits your needs.
The method which a hangover cure is taken is also something that should not be overlooked. Some remedies come in the form of tablets or capsules, which are easy to take. This format is not only the most common, it is also the most effective. However, it is possible that you may prefer a different type of product since not everyone likes taking tablets when they have a hangover.
If you don't like swallowing pills there are other formats that are easier to take. Some hangover cures come in a liquid form, they have a pleasant taste and can be drunk straight out of the bottle. If you prefer, there are also powdered products that you can mix with water, milk or tea. As you can see, there is something for everyone.
The effectiveness of a hangover remedy will depend on how it is formulated. There are some scientific formulas, which are usually more effective, and contain added elements such as minerals and vitamins. If you are not worried about the ingredients used to formulate a hangover remedy, just choose any one of these products and you can't go wrong.
On the other hand, some products have a 100% natural formula. They are made using organic and plant-based ingredients, such as milk thistle and artichoke, which are effective against hangovers. If you are someone who is careful about what you put in your body, choose one of these. If you are vegan or vegetarian, or have any food allergies, make sure you choose a product that is appropriate for you.
The first thing we advise is to not consume alcohol on a regular basis, or in excessive quantities. The best way to avoid hangover is to simply not drink too much. Having a hangover is normal from time to time, but you have to be responsible with your consumption.
Remember that alcohol affects concentration and coordination, even if you don't notice it at the time.
That being said, if you are planning on buying one of these products you are obviously going to use it, although maybe not very often. Some of these hangover cures can also be used as vitamin supplements, and are packaged in bottles containing lots of pills. So buying a product that also has a secondary use, can make more sense. Then you have something you can benefit from on a daily basis, but also have on hand in case you need it after a big night of drinking.
Some drinkable hangover cures have strong flavors, such as orange, tea, guarana and ginseng. Not everyone likes these intense flavors, especially because during a hangover your sense of taste can be more sensitive. If you don't want to take the risk of buying a product that you don't like, you are probably better off choosing one that is in a pill or capsule format. These are usually coated and have no taste when swallowed. If you aren't a big fan of strong flavors, this is the way to go. Keep in mind that powders that need to be mixed with water, will most likely also have an intense taste.
Customer reviews should play an important role in your decision process. Never buy a product for the first time, without reading the comments of other users that can give you detailed and technical information about your purchase. It is good to know the experience people have had with a certain product, to find out what they thought about the taste, how quickly the remedy began to take effect, and if it actually worked as described by the manufacturer.
The best hangover cure is to not drink in the first place, or otherwise to drink responsibly. You can still have fun drinking in moderation, and remember that your liver needs time to metabolize alcohol. Go slowly and always have some water in between drinks, so you will give your body enough time process the alcohol and avoid a nasty hangover.
If hangovers are something that you simply cannot avoid, don't worry the remedies available these days do work. Keep in mind everything we explained in this article and choose the product that best suits your needs. Remember that hangovers are different for everybody. Now it's your time to decide, which hangover remedy are you going to buy?
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