A night out drinking with friends can be a wonderful time. At least, until you wind up regretting it the next morning. As most of us are aware, the enjoyment of alcohol tends to come with a cost. This is particularly true if we overdo it, or have a sensitivity. And like most things, it tends to get a little worse with each year of age. I remember back in college when I get let loose on a Saturday night, then wake up in a sprightly mood on Sunday morning. These days, I’m feeling it even if I drink a few beers. And if I really go after it, say at a wedding or birthday party? Oh man. The after-effects can be debilitating, sometimes keeping me stuck in bed for most the day. But fear not. We’re here to serve up the best hangover cures you can take deploy.
First, let’s touch on a few of the mythical remedies that don’t really deliver. These are pretty widespread — heck, I’ve tried most of them — but the science (and in some cases common sense) don’t back them up.
For instance, many people believe that one of the best hangover cures is a bit of “Hair of the Dog.” You know, you get up and crack a beer or order up a Bloody Mary, with hopes of diminishing that headache. Reinforcing this method is the fact that people DO often feel some quick relief after a few sips. This is because the booze dulls your senses and the reintroduction of alcohol temporarily delays the withdrawal. But you’re only delaying the inevitable, and potentially making it worse.
The best hangover cures, of course, the are the ones that actually work. Like, as in, they have evidentiary backing and not the kind of circumstantial “old wives tale” support such as the above.
What are the Best Hangover Cures?
Let’s count it down from five to one, leading up the single most effective method for shaking off that brutal misery of the next day. And no, we’re not going to use “don’t drink” as one of our suggestions. That’s dumb.
5. Greasy Breakfast for Hangovers
We frequently see people associate this method with killing hangovers. Get some bacon and hash browns in your gut and then you’ll be good to go, right? In truth, it’s more of a placebo (did we just ruin it?). Getting food in your stomach after a night of drinking — and more importantly, BEFORE a night of drinking — is good. But the grease isn’t really factor, and can actually be a negative if it further upsets your stomach.
4. Caffeine for Hangovers
A cup of coffee or an alternative can help your shake out of your funk and pep up. It adds alertness and speeds up metabolism to quicken the process of getting alcohol out of your system. Don’t drink too much though; you may get a headache or jitters.
3. Aspirin for Hangovers
Painkillers can be effective for combating headaches and other pains associated with a hangover. Make sure you use a non-acetaminophen (aspiring or ibuprofen) instead of Tylenol, which can be hard on your liver at a time when you need it least.
2. Sports Drinks for Hangovers
Among the best hangover cures, hydration beats everything. That’s because dehydration is the primary cause of the numerous issues complicit to the issue. Sports drinks like Gatorade containt electrolytes which can be helpful. (However, research shows that this isn’t as beneficial as you would expect.)
When it comes to beating a hangover, nothing can top good old fashioned H20. It’s pure hydration, with no extra additives, no sugars, no nothing. Consume plenty of it before you drink, while you drink, and the morning after you drink. None of the other best hangover cures can match this one for efficacy.