Sorry. This post is not about learning how to create a great hangover. It is about some potential remedies in the event you overindulge this New Year’s Eve and wake up with the hangover symptoms of nausea, headache, dizziness, fatigue and such. But first, please let’s be adult about this. If you are going to partake this New Year’s Eve (or at anytime for that matter), please do not drive. Enough said about that.
So, let’s skip to the part where you wake up and have the strange feeling that someone put tiny little socks on each of your teeth, your head is pounding, and the room is still spinning. Well, there isn’t much you can do from a prevention aspect, but there is still hope. Since you are likely still “under the influence”, I suggest you call a cab or take a bus to All Ways Health for their New Year’s Day Hangover Clinic. Dr. Rich Petke provides a therapeutic injection of select B vitamins, in combination with other natural remedies to resolve your ailment.
So what’s really happening in your body to give you the hungover blues. Actually, hangovers are not well researched by the medical community. Anecdotal accounts seem to indicate that drinking water helps ease the symptoms of hangover, but there is no research to back this up. What is more understood is the chemistry behind the metabolism of alcohol. Very simply, enzymes in the liver break down the ethanol from your consumption and convert it into acetaldehyde, which is up to 30 times more toxic to the body than the original ethanol. Ultimately, because of this stress the liver is unable to keep up its production of glucose which is the primary fuel for the brain. This glucose starvation of the brain is what is thought to contribute to the symptoms of hangover.
This is where Vitamin B can help. Generally, the group of B Vitamins (there are nine of them) help to speed up the reactions of energy conversion, digestion and nerve function. In fact, some studies have found that large doses of Vitamin B-6 can help reduce hangovers, primarily by assisting alcohol metabolization and dilating blood vessels. Ideally, this remedy needs to be taken before you go to bed, so the vitamin can do it’s work. In the morning, the pill may be too late, and that’s why Dr. Petke uses an injection in his Hangover Clinic.
Ultimately, the best remedy for the hangover is prevention. The only guaranteed way to avoid a hangover is to avoid consuming alcohol in the first place. But if you do imbibe, the best advice is to pre-hydrate with water and intersperse adequate water during your evening. Pace yourself, so your liver can process the alcohol in your bloodstream which is roughly about 1 ounce of alcohol per hour. If you drink faster than that, you risk having too little blood in your alcohol stream. You might also consider supplementing with a B-Complex vitamin before bedtime for the reasons mentioned above.
Above all, have a fun and safe celebration this New Year’s Eve so that 2012 can hold all of the promise that you may resolve to experience.