I for one love a drink (or two) of white wine given a social occasion with friends. But hangovers I don’t enjoy and too much of a good thing ceases to be fun. Hangovers are caused by drinking too much alcohol; the amount to cause them varies according to an individual’s height, weight, metabolism and frequency of drinking. Symptoms include a thick head, dry mouth, nausea, trembling and a blinding headache behind the eyes.

Alcohol is an irritant, which can cause bad stomachs and ulcers.
Too much alcohol can encourage a drop in blood sugar levels.
·Alcohol contains diuretic properties. During a heavy drinking session the body loses water and we need the loo often.

When we lose fluid the body dehydrates and we need more water.

Alcoholic drinks contain natural by-products of alcohol fermentation called congeners. These impurities get into the system adding to our hangover. Darker drinks like red wine, beer, port and brandy contain most congeners. Being a depressant, alcohol can cause irritability and moodiness.

In order to avoid hangovers “line” your stomach before a drinking session by eating foods such as milk, bread, potato, and pasta which take a time to digest. Don’t mix drinks and pace yourself. Prevent dehydration by drinking water alongside your alcohol. Drink a lot of water before going to bed – the trick is to consume more liquid than the urine you pass out. And yes you will need the loo during the night but you will also avoid the morning hangover.

Some will tell you the cure for your hangover is “a hair of the dog”. In other words another drink! Forget it; more booze will make you high again, just delaying the sobering up process! But the following tried and tested cures may help.

Allow time to pass for your body to process and rid itself of the excess alcohol. Restore the body’s glucose levels by eating small amounts of food. Painkillers like Nurofen or Panadol give some relief, or dissolve a sachet of Resolve (containing paracetamol and antacids) in water. However, mixing aspirin or painkillers with alcohol can cause internal bleeding. Try downing 2 raw eggs. They contain N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC) a chemical that helps restore liver efficiency impaired by overindulgence. Some people swear that a Bloody Mary drink made with V8 or tomato juice (full of anti-oxidants and vitamins) does the trick – minus the Vodka of course! Take a brisk walk in fresh air to re-energise your system.

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