It’s summertime, time for vacations, long weekends and enjoying time with family and friends. Often, when we’re enjoying the good times outside and celebrating, we also tend to include our favorite beverages during these celebrations and slightly overindulging in them becomes a little easier than we think. And, you end up paying for it the next day.

But, don’t despair! There are a few great ways to manage the side effects of a hangover so you won’t suffer quite so much the next day.

First, let’s look at what causes a hangover.

1) Dehydration

Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it naturally dehydrates you and increases the amount of times you urinate, depleting some of those key electrolytes. This combination of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance contributes to the hangover symptoms of thirst, headaches and dizziness.

2) Gastrointestinal & Liver Disturbance

The next problem with excess alcohol consumption is the effect on the gastrointestinal tract. Alcohol causes an irritation of the stomach and intestines, causing inflammation and delaying gastric emptying. Alcohol is also quite acidic, leading to excess gastric acid production. If we have too much acid production, it may send a message to the brain to induce vomiting to get rid of this harmful substance. In addition to the effect on the gastrointestinal tract, alcohol can lead to the accumulation of fat in the liver, leading to “fatty liver”. Combine these factors together and this accounts for the pain and general feeling of nausea and unease due to excess alcohol consumption.

3) Blood Sugar Link

Alcohol has a direct effect on blood sugar. The metabolism of alcohol causes a buildup of chemicals the hamper glucose production, leading to a state of low blood sugar. Alcohol will also break down glycogen to glucose, our body’s sugar store, which is then excreted. These depletions lead to those feelings of fatigue and mood imbalances.

4) Acetaldehyde

Acetylaldehyde is a toxin that is accumulated when alcohol is broken down in the body. This chemical is quite harmful to the body and it is broken down even further so as not to cause any damage, eventually being eliminated in our urine. However, when we overconsume alcohol, our bodies become overwhelmed and can’t effectively break down this chemical, causing it to accumulate and contributing to increased pulse rates, sweating, flushing and even nausea and vomiting.

Other factors can play a role in that nasty hangover and stomach ache, such as alcohol sensitivities, impurities in alcohol, mixing of different alcohols and even gender. Sorry ladies, we just can’t tolerate as much alcohol as men. We don’t have as many enzymes to break down that acetaldehyde, so it accumulates faster and its effects become greater. So, don’t even bother to try and match your man drink for drink.

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So, now that we know what causes a hangover, what can we do to help one if we DO have a night of overindulgence?

1) Drink, Drink, Drink… water

We know alcohol is a diuretic, so get in that water. I promise you’ll be thankful the next day.  Drink tons of water the morning after, but you can also prevent the hangover by staying hydrated during the day if you know you’re going out and try matching every alcoholic beverage with a glass of water. This will dilute some of those impurities which are especially high in those sweet drinks and fend off that horrible stomachache the next day.  It’s also a good idea to balance those electrolytes. Skip the artificially sweetened, sugary sport drinks and reach for some coconut water.

2) A Good time for Bad Food

You already know it’s important to eat before you head out for a night on the town. But, prior to a night of overconsuming, try a fattier meal. The grease may coat your digestive tract, causing the alcohol to take longer to absorb, meaning the effect it has on you may not be as great.

3) Avoid Acetaminophen

Your liver may already be struggling from your night of indulgence, don’t make it work any harder by taking acetaminophen. I know the pounding headaches aren’t a treat, but try the hydration techniques and a good meal before reaching for the meds, since these can be harmful to your already stressed liver.

4) “Hair of the Dog”… although good in theory, is bad in practice

For those of you who think reaching for a drink to get rid of that awful feeling the next day is a good choice, think again! This may lessen your hangover symptoms initially, but it’s just delaying the symptom, since you’re just putting more toxins back into your body and they will also have to be processed!

5) Eat a hearty breakfast and make sure eggs are part of that choice!

Eggs contain high amounts of the amino acid cysteine which helps break down that accumulated acetaldehyde. Fructose may also assist the rate at which the body gets rid of toxins. This doesn’t mean high fructose corn syrup though, so try reaching for natural fruit juices or an actual fruit to get those sugars.

6) Don’t forget the supplements!

Alcohol depletes your body of so many key nutrients! It’s important to keep those high to help stave off that hangover feeling.

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  • Get you B vitamins: Alcohol depletes your body of B vitamins, especially B6, so taking a B complex, such as TrueB Complex prior to heading out (and before bed, if you can remember), is a great way to prevent hangovers. A good multivitamin, such as TrueBASICS A/O, would also be helpful, since nutrients, such as vitamin C and magnesium, are also commonly depleted. The antioxidants may also help fight some of the damaging effects of alcohol.
  • Support your liver! After a night of drinking, you’re full of toxins and your poor liver is trying to process and eliminate what you’ve put in it. Taking a good detox supplement, such as TrueDETOX and Cleanse, can help your body eliminate these toxins as well as support the detox function of your liver.
  • You may also want to add in some ginger, perhaps in the form of ginger tea, to help manage any nausea or stomach discomfort you’re feeling the next morning.


7) Know your body!

Find out what works for you! If you have a wine sensitivity, figure out which wines don’t work for you, or which alcohols you are able to tolerate. Some alcohols cause worse hangovers than other, such as highly tannic red wines and dark liquors, such as bourbon and some tequilas.  Lighter drinks, such as white wine and vodka, may be a bit nicer to your system.

8) Drink in moderation

That’s an obvious one! But, don’t forget all the health benefits that have been observed over the years in alcoholic drinks come with moderate alcohol consumption and are linked to improved cardiovascular health and longevity, when compared to non-drinkers and heavy drinkers.  So, keep that in mind the next time you overindulge.

Always remember to drink wisely!

Originally Posted Here.