Hangovers are episodes of unpleasant symptoms you experience after episodes of binge drinking. Some of the common symptoms of hangover include headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness and sleep disturbance to name a few. On an average, the liver is able to metabolise only 8 gm to 12 gm of alcohol in an hour. The only way to prevent hangovers or get less drunk is by either stopping to drink or drink nothing more than one or two drinks. Keep reading to know more about why hangovers feel so bad and the effect of frequent hangovers on your health.
Hangover effects: Why do hangovers feel so bad?
Alcohol is absorbed quicker than most other foods or beverages. It spreads throughout the body, including the liver and brain. On drinking alcohol, the body tries to breakdown and dispose of the alcohol. Liver produces enzymes or small molecules that breakdown important molecules. Alcohol dehydrogenase breaks down ethanol into acetaldehyde, which is then further broken down into acetic acid and carbon dioxide.
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On all stages of breakdown, there’s a release of energy as well. This the reason why heavy alcohol drinkers tend to be overweight. In the long term, alcoholics get most of their calories from alcohol and eat very little. This results in consumption of just empty calories and very less intake of vitamins, minerals, proteins, fat, carbs and fibre.
After drinking alcohol in high doses, ethanal is the product, which makes you want to vomit. As soon as your body contains ethanal, your stomach contracts and make you sick. This is often experienced after you eat something.
Also read: Can You Drink Alcohol On A Low-Carb Diet? Everything You Need To Know
How to prevent/treat hangovers?
As mentioned above, the only way to treat or prevent hangovers is to stop drinking or drink less. What’s more, no amount of alcohol is suitable or beneficial for your health. The best take is to stop drinking alcohol. Nonetheless, there are a few tips and tricks that can help in reducing hangovers.
1. Hydrate yourself: For every drink that you take, drink a glass of water. Alcohol dehydrates your body severely, and this is the reason why you get hangovers. For reducing hangover the next morning, drink lots of water or lemon water-the very popular home remedy for hangovers.
2. Eat before and while drinking: Alcohol gets absorbed in the body more quickly on an empty stomach. To prevent hangovers and reduce their severity, eat before and while drinking.
Also read: Yet Another Good Reason To Eat This Green Veggie: Treats Alcohol And Mood Disorders
3. Do not mix drinks: This is the worst thing that you can do for your liver. Mixing drinks can cause worse hangovers. If you are someone who gets hungover easily, then choose light drinks over heavy drinks to prevent or reduce severity of hangovers.
4. Drink slowly: Not just the kind of drinks but the pattern of drinking also influences your risk of getting a hangover. Drink slowly, sip water after every drink, and make smaller drinks to avoid hangovers.
This holiday season, drink responsibly. Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!