07/19/2024

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When it comes to recovering from a hangover, everyone has their preferred option, whether it’s eating a greasy breakfast, taking over-the-counter painkillers, or going to the gym. But not every “cure” works – and some may make you feel worse.

Yahoo Lifestyle reached out to physician and medical contributor Dr. Alok Patel and Liz Weinandy, a registered dietitian at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, to find out which remedies can help – and possibly hurt – your hangover. your hangover.

The remedy: Eat a big, greasy breakfast

The verdict: Pass

Munching on a greasy hamburger while drinking can help you prevent a hangover, but experts don’t recommend overcoming a hangover the next day. “Eating high-fat foods means they take longer to empty from the stomach, which can help if you eat greasy foods while drinking,” Weinandy told Yahoo Lifestyle. “If a person has food in their stomach while they’re drinking, it helps slow down the absorption of alcohol in the stomach.”

However, Weinandy said eating greasy fried foods the next day to help cure a hangover can make stomach and gastrointestinal symptoms worse. “A person may feel better because they ate something after drinking, but eating a greasy meal is not recommended,” she noted.

Patel agreed, telling Yahoo Lifestyle, “A greasy breakfast may actually cause more nausea, indigestion or reflux, making you feel worse.”

So what should you eat? Weinandy recommends eating complex carbohydrates, “especially fluid- and potassium-rich carbohydrates like fruit, to help replace lost fluids and electrolytes.” Moisturizing watermelon is a good choice, as well as mangoes, grapes and oranges. But if you’re really not feeling well, the Cleveland Clinic recommends sticking to lighter foods that are easy to digest, such as toast, rice or bananas.

Remedy: Consume caffeine

The verdict: Yes – but with a caveat

According to Patel, caffeine, such as that from coffee or tea, can help relieve hangover headaches. It can also help you feel more alert when you’re a little groggy after a late night out, Weinandy adds. “It won’t ‘cure’ a hangover,” Weinandy says, “but it can help with fatigue.”

Just don’t overdo it with caffeine. “One caveat is that large amounts of caffeine can act as a diuretic for your body,” Weinandy says, which can make you more dehydrated. “But it’s not a matter of moderate coffee or tea intake if the person is drinking other liquids in addition to caffeinated beverages,” she explains.

Another reason to watch your caffeine intake: Patel notes, “Coffee can also upset your stomach, make you feel nervous, and disrupt your heart rhythm, which is already under attack from alcohol.”

The remedy: take over-the-counter painkillers

The verdict: Yes – but with a caveat

“Over-the-counter painkillers can definitely help relieve some symptoms,” Weinandy says. But choose wisely. Experts recommend skipping acetaminophen (the active ingredient in Tylenol). According to Harvard Health, “If alcohol lingers in your system, it can exacerbate the toxic effects of acetaminophen on the liver.”

NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen and aspirin, NSAIDs can help – but these painkillers are not without problems. “Ibuprofen can mess with your stomach,” Patel explains. Weinandy advises people to “avoid aspirin because the liver has to metabolize it. The liver is already working overtime trying to metabolize alcohol, and adding aspirin to it is not a good idea.”

Weinandy recommends sticking with ibuprofen. “But be sure to eat and drink with it, because NSAIDs are hard to take on an empty stomach,” she notes.

Remedy: Spend the day in bed

The verdict: Depends on the situation

Alcohol can disrupt your sleep and make you feel tired the next day. If you’re not in good health, Weinandy suggests you continue to spend the day in bed. “Since fatigue is one of the main symptoms of a hangover, it may be better for most people to rest,” she says.

While Patel agrees that resting in bed “may make you feel better,” he recommends moving your body as much as possible. “If you get up and start moving, your body will produce endorphins and you’ll breathe more. This may actually help detoxify the drink more than you think.”

The remedy: flush out the “toxins”

The verdict: Pass

Experts say don’t expect exercise to get you out of a hangover any faster. “I don’t want to put it to you – there’s no evidence that you’re sweating anything that contributes to a hangover,” Patel says. “You’re probably just going to make yourself more dehydrated and feel more sluggish,” Patel said.

Weinandy agrees, saying, “If someone is already dehydrated and trying to ‘sweat’ alcohol, it doesn’t seem like a good idea – it could make the dehydration worse. “

Remedy: Hair of the dog

The verdict: Fighting a hangover by drinking more alcohol “is like adding fuel to the fire,” says Weinandy, and often makes the symptoms of a hangover worse, especially in terms of dehydration and fatigue.

As Patel says, “Drinking more alcohol with a hangover only prevents the inevitable – you’ll still feel nauseous. You’re just pushing it back.”

The countermeasure: drink water

The verdict: Yes.

Experts say drinking water is one of the best ways to tackle a hangover. “One of the main side effects of drinking too much alcohol is dehydration,” Weinandy explains. “Drinking alcohol causes a person to urinate more, and it can disrupt our body’s fluid balance. As a result, drinking large amounts of alcohol can lead to dehydration, especially if a person has vomiting or diarrhea as a symptom. Drinking fluids, even if it’s just plain water, does help.”

Patel agrees, saying, “Hydration is a good thing. If you’re hungover, drink water.” He also recommends ingesting some electrolytes, such as drinking Gatorade or Pedialyte, to restore the body’s electrolyte balance.

But as Patel says, “Honestly, we probably shouldn’t prevent all hangovers-we should listen to our bodies more and drink less overall.”

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