Making hangovers bearable

By Justine Plemons |Staff Writer|

As long as college students have been drinking we’ve been trying to find ways to cure the aftermath of a throbbing head and nausea, affectionately called: the hangover.

So, I hit the streets and Facebook to ask students what their cure for hangovers were. I got everything from crackers and Advil to Rockstar Recovery energy drinks.

Some of the remedies ranged from funny to ridiculous, including eating cucumbers to sweating it out in the sauna. These are the top few answers I got:

Gatorade, greasy Mexican food, bread, water before bed, keep drinking, sleeping, Vitamin Water, sweating it out at the gym or sauna/ exercise and vitamin supplements
I don’t know about you but the last thing I want to do when I am hung over is exercise.

“Throughout the night I sip on Pedialyte. I don’t have as bad as a hangover the next morning but you have to drink it before bed,” said Megan Ard.

Although, according to the British Medical Journal, “No compelling evidence exists to suggest that any conventional or complementary intervention is effective for preventing or treating alcohol hangover. The most effective way to avoid the symptoms of alcohol induced hangover is to practice abstinence or moderation.”

Moderation? Abstinence? That is not fun.

Since not drinking isn’t an option, for most of us and moderation is a foreign concept, we consume greasy Mexican food, bubba kegs filled with Gatorade and bottles of Advil to “cure” our hangovers.

Although no matter how many egg burritos we consume these “cures” will only delay the inevitable hangover, it is biological.

The key to avoid a hangover is to stay hydrated.

The reason for a hangover is because your body is severely dehydrated, hence the headache, nausea and dry mouth.

An entrepreneur from New York Dave Shor, has created a drink named “Mercy” that he believes “prevents hangovers by replenishing a variety of key compounds in the body, including certain amino acids that help break down a toxic byproduct of alcohol processing.”

Most of us think that a hangover is simply caused because of too much alcohol consumption but in reality there are many components to it, including dehydration and a byproduct of alcohol processing called, acetaldehyde. This is a fancy word for toxins your liver can’t break down while we take shots of vodka.

So, drinking recovery drinks like Mercy, Rockstar Recovery and Rebootizers, will not detox us any faster than water, they will just add electrolytes back into our body.  These recovery drinks are the equivalent to diet pills, they sound great in theory but are just a placebo effect.

Hangovers affect much more than our bodies but our minds as well. Decreased sleep, depression and irritability, those Jager bombs wreak havoc on more than just our wallets. “As with most such things, moderation in alcohol intake is an excellent idea and it’s better to prevent than treat,” says nutrition expert, Marion Nestle.