College nights, ladies’ nights and bottomless drink specials always call for a good time, but when the alarm goes off the next morning, that hangover comes right along like shivers with a silver tequila shot.
Although studies show there isn’t a magical remedy that takes all the pain away, there are ways to live through the day after.
Hangovers come in many shapes and forms depending on how much alcohol one consumed the night before. Some of the most common symptoms many college students are likely to be familiar with are fatigue, weakness, thirst, headache and muscle aches, nausea, vomiting and stomach pain, decreased sleep, decreased REM, decreased attention and concentration, depression, anxiety, irritability, sweating and increased pulse and systolic blood pressure. Sound familiar?
Well, the good news is that if you experience any of these, it’s normal, even if it’s your worst nightmare, as these symptoms have been found in various studies associated with heavy drinking.
According to a journal, “Alcohol Hangover – Mechanism and Mediators,” hangovers are the constellation of unpleasant physical and mental symptoms. Needless to say, the more you drink the more prevalent the hangover.
Now, what do you do when you don’t want to miss out on college night, but work and class are calling your name in the morning?
According to the aforementioned study, hangover symptoms usually abate over eight to 24 hours. So, don’t expect to change the world before noon, but the following tips can help you the morning after.
1. Drink plenty of fluids. Alcohol causes dehydration. It decreases the body’s production of anti-diuretic hormone, which is used by the body to reabsorb water. That leads the body to lose more fluid than normal through increased urination. Drink water to rehydrate and Gatorade to refuel on electrolytes. Coconut water is also a great option because it contains potassium, which is a type of electrolyte that you lose with dehydration.
2. Have a light, healthy breakfast. Whether you wake up with nausea and can’t even look at food or wake up starving and want to eat anything that comes your way, do not reach for the greasy bacon or burger. Your best bet is a high protein, moderate-fat and low-carb meal, such as eggs with vegetables, some feta cheese and a slice of whole wheat bread.
3. Pop a pill. Studies show that antacids may alleviate nausea and gastritis, while nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, may reduce the headache and muscle aches. However, they should be used cautiously, particularly if you experience upper abdominal pain or nausea.
4. Take vitamin B6 or eat foods that contain it. Alcohol depletes vitamin B; however, the body needs it to eliminate alcohol from its system. Taking vitamin B6, even before the night starts, may help the hangover the next day. Some foods that contain vitamin B6 are rice, fish, poultry, bananas and dried fruits.
5. Recharge on vitamin C. Alcohol also depletes your body of vitamin C, which is important for reducing alcohol-induced oxidative stress in your liver. Either take vitamin C as a tablet or dissolve a pack of Emergen-C in water. If those are not available to you, some foods that contain vitamin C are citrus fruits and juices, kiwi, mango, broccoli and cauliflower.
Surviving the day after a night out is possible without staying in a dark room all day. You just have to do it right and know the tricks that can help your body recover.
These tips can help you feel better. However, studies say that there has been no compelling evidence to suggest that any conventional or complementary intervention is effective for preventing or treating a hangover. The most effective way to avoid the symptoms is to avoid drinking or drink in moderation.