There is nothing good about a hangover. They’re nasty, inconsiderate things that have a habit of sneaking up on you when you least expect it.
“But I didn’t drink that much”… “Surely I’ve been more intoxicated, and haven’t gotten this sick”… “I stopped drinking early in the night, so why is it I’m still feeling like dog’s breakfast at 6pm the following day?”… All with that underlying whine of self-justification, of course.
There’s no cure for a hangover. And, possibly most frustrating of all, scientist don’t actually know the exact reason for the symptoms of a hangover.
“The alcohol hangover is an intriguing issue since it is unknown why these symptoms are present after alcohol and its metabolites are eliminated from the body,” researcher Dr Allan Thomson said in an Oxford University Press study. “The alcohol hangover develops when blood alcohol concentration (BAC) returns to zero and is characterised by a feeling of general misery that may last more than 24 hours,”
This, we all know. But science has discovered that some beverages are worse than others in inducing the throbbing-head, retching-stomach, feverish-sweats that constitute the ‘morning after’.
Why does no one want to party anymore? Post continues below video.
It’s not necessarily about how much you drink, but the colour of what you’re drinking.
If it’s rich in colour, it’s a ‘no’ from me… Unless I’m having an unbeatable urge to destroy sme brain cells and spend a Sunday in bed with the curtains drawn.
Why? The colour in alcohol is often caused by chemicals called congeners, which also flavour drinks. High concentrations of congeners (found in richly coloured spirits like bourbon) are thought to lead to a more aggressive hangover, and mixing high and low concentrations of congeners on a night out isn’t likely to go down well either.
“Drinking lighter colored drinks isn’t a good method of hangover prevention – but it may help a little. Congeners are found in larger amounts in dark liquors, such as brandy, whiskey, darker beer and red wine, than they are in clear liquors, such as vodka, gin and lighter beers. One particular congener – methanol – breaks down into the toxins formaldehyde and formic acid, which can worsen a hangover,” psychiatrist, specialising in addiction, Dr Daniel Hall-Flavin wrote in a Mayo Clinic statement.
As well as congeners, you need to look out for bubbles.
I knew it. The conspiracy that is champagne drinking. It starts off sooo sophisticated, only to end with a hammering headache hours later.
There is a reason for this. The carbon dioxide that forms the bubbles is thought to aid in absorption of alcohol to the blood stream. In fact, one study showed blood alcohol levels in champagne-drinking participants were higher in the first twenty minutes of drinking, compared to those drinking non-bubbly beverages.
The way we see it? Fewer bubbles and congeners… more room for gin or (and?) vodkas.