All of those summer party invitations may often result in an abundance of libations, and even more so, the inevitable byproduct of those indulgences. The ‘morning after’ can mean pounding headaches, an insatiable appetite, and an uncontrollable thirst. To alleviate second-day remorse, we turn to the old wives tales of “curing” hangovers. If this sounds familiar to you, keep on reading to find out why these so called “cures” are just myths.
MYTH 1: DRINKING COFFEE
With the lack of energy and painful headaches, a cup of joe is not the answer! Sure, since caffeine is a stimulant, it will give you a jolt to combat early-morning fatigue. But, caffeine works as a diuretic just like alcohol, so that morning espresso will just dehydrate your body and may even intensify that headache. In addition, caffeine is a vasoconstrictor— it contracts blood vessels and reduces their size. This actually offsets the impact of alcohol by causing the blood vessel to swell instead, thus contributing to that persistent headache.
MYTH 2: TAKING TYLENOL (ACETAMINOPHEN)
Tylenol (generically known as acetaminophen) is commonly used to treat minor headaches, reduce fever, and temporarily alleviate pain. However, when you ingest these pills, they can further damage your liver. Your liver is one of the largest organs in your body, and one of its vital functions is processing toxins for you. While the liver is busy metabolizing alcohol from the night (or morning) before, it breaks down acetaminophen differently to potentially produce harmful by-products. What this means is possible liver damage and cirrhosis.
MYTH 3: HAIR OF THE DOG
This quirky expression originates from a Norwegian saying that indicates the best way to treat a hangover is to consume more of the substance (i.e., alcohol). Alcohol will initially lessen that grinding hangover, but as tempting as it may sound, will cause more dehydration. The hangover will ultimately come back to haunt you.
MYTH 4: EATING GREASY FOOD
Who doesn’t want an excuse to eat pizza and fries? Still, consuming a fatty meal the morning-after will divert the stomach from absorbing those essential recovery nutrients. Actually, a greasy start to the day might irate your used-and-abused stomach even more. So, instead of munching on that sizzling, evil burger after a night out, try munching on it before the night out to protect the stomach and prevent what could be the worst hangover of your life.
MYTH 5: EXERCISING
You know the drill by now—feelings of exhaustion, persistent headaches and even nausea. If you feel like that in the morning, working out may not be the best way to rid the body of toxins. Alcohol is a diuretic, so it makes you urinate, and it will only cause the body to lose water easier, not necessarily the alcohol. An attempt at a major sweat session will only dehydrate the body even more. Hold off on being beautiful until you get your groove back.
MYTH 6: SPORTS DRINK
Sports drinks such as Gatorade contain 3 essential components to combat that hangover: (1) electrolytes; (2) carbohydrates (3) water. Electrolytes include sodium, potassium, and chloride and are ingested to restore those that you lost on the dance floor. But, keep in mind that the human body can only absorb a maximum of about one quart of water per hour. So chugging the entire Gatorade bottle will result in the loss of most of its contents, especially that precious water containing the electrolytes.
CURE: SPORTS DRINK MAY GET THE JOB DONE IN A PINCH.
MYTH 7: GLASS OF WATER BEFORE BED
It is no surprise that drinking water after a night on the town can help avert that dreadful morning headache. Why? Well, the tissues around your brain consist mostly of water, and dehydration will cause the tissues to shrink. This generates pressure in your head. But, the same explanation for Myth 6 applies here as well: your body can only absorb a certain amount of fluid before it all goes to waste. The water will help, but the more you drink, the more you waste. So, once your tired body reaches your bed, remember that glass of water shouldn’t be too full.
Let’s just take a moment to give you a pat on the back. You made it through your hangover (and helpful article) promptly and effectively. But despite the many years of experience you may obtain, drinking can have life-altering consequences. Your health and productivity may not be so great after binge drinking, and the absence of sleep you acquire on the weekends may increase your risk for developing depression (and overeating— yikes!).
Instead, drink in moderation, choose your libations wisely, and take care of yourself. One way to take care of (and reward) yourself is to come in for a drip at the Hangiver Bar! The “Hair of the Dog” drip is perfect to restore lost electrolytes and vitamins, and helps appease those hangover symptoms.
You will first meet with the physician to get cleared for your drip, once cleared you will experience IV hydration therapy!
See you at The HangIVer Bar!