The festive period is almost upon us, and if you have a long list of Christmas Parties and End of Year functions to attend, the chances are, there will be one or two celebratory drinks involved that could leave you feeling anything but merry!
Hangovers happen to the best of us, and while many of us buy painkillers online to ease the symptoms caused by our overindulgence such as nausea, headaches, and upset stomachs, there are a variety of tried and tested hangover cures available that could help you recover without reaching for medication.
Of course, prevention is always better than cure (there is no real cure for a hangover!), and if you can avoid drinking on an empty stomach, stick to the same drink all night, consume a glass of water for every alcoholic beverage, and drink in moderation, your hangover will be much less severe. But we all know that things do not always go to plan when we are out having fun, and so we have prepared a list of our Top 10 Hangover Cures to help you make it through the season of goodwill.
Top 10 Hangover Cures
Alcohol is a diuretic, and so when we drink too much of it we become dehydrated. This is what causes most of our symptoms and while we feel so dreadful the morning after. Replacing lost fluids is essentials if you are to over come your hangover, and so try to drink a pint of water before you go to bed, and start sipping water as soon as you wake up. You may fancy something sweet and fizzy, but if your stomach is feeling sensitive, stick with water or soda.
A glass of fresh orang juice, rich in vitamin C, might do you good, but you may want to avoid it if you are sensitive to the high acidity.
Coffee may sound like a good idea if you are hungover, but it might not be. For a start, coffee is highly acidic which, as we've already alluded to, can worsen stomach ache.
It is often misreported that coffee will cause you to become dehydrated. While caffeine does have a diuretic effect and may cause you to urinate more frequently, drinking coffee in moderation is unlikely to cause dehydration.
However, due to the way the caffeine - a stimulant - affects the nervous system, you may want to limit or completely avoid coffee if it worsens hangover symptoms such as headaches and stomach cramps.
If you fancy a warm drink, a tea with ginger could alleviate your nausea.
Particularly, peppermint tea and ginger have shown to be effective at relieving nausea.
You may feel like staying in bed all day if you have a hangover, but fresh air is one of the best natural remedies out there, and best of all, it doesn't cost a penny. A brisk walk in your local park or a trip to the shop could be all you need to shake off the symptoms of your hangover and start feeling yourself again.
Alcohol can, for some people, be an asthma trigger and make it difficult to breathe. These symptoms can be made worse by the cold air during the winter months. If you feel that your asthma has been effected, reach for your reliever inhaler.
If you are feeling nauseous, food is probably the last thing on your mind, but if you can eat a good meal, you'll soon start to feel better.
While a slap-up full English breakfast is often touted as the ultimate hangover cure, it's important to remember that a fry up is high in saturated fats. You can make your English breakfast healthier by grilling bacon and poaching eggs, rather than frying them.
If you cannot face a full English breakfast, try a piece of wholemeal toast or perhaps a bowl of vegetable based soup, to restore your vitamin and mineral levels.
This one may sound a little extreme, especially if you are feeling sensitive, but light exercise such a bike ride or swim at your local baths will help blow the cobwebs away.
Forget the 'Hair of the Dog'
Drinking more alcohol can make you feel better in the short term, but it is a very dangerous route to take. Your body needs time to flush out the remaining alcohol in your system, and topping up could cause all kinds of tissue damage to vital organs such as the stomach, liver and kidneys. Avoid the 'hair of the dog' at all costs, and leave it at least 48 hours until you consume any more alcohol.
Eat a Banana
Packed with potassium, Bananas are the perfect hangover food for those with sensitive stomachs.
Potassium is an electrolyte and is effective at retaining water in the body, counteracting the diuretic effect of alcohol.
If you cannot face a whole banana, trying blending one with honey and milk to create a delicious smoothie.
Take a Bath
A good long soak in a hot bath can ease the symptoms of a hangover and help draw out the toxins that have built up in your body. Add a few drops of lavender or peppermint essential oils and let them soothe your pains.
Take Pain relief
If all else fails, take a couple of painkillers as prescribed by your pharmacist. You can buy most painkillers online from a UK registered pharmacy, so stock up before the festive season begins.
In most cases, paracetamol should reduce a headache.
Take an antacid
Antacids can settle your stomach and treat heartburn, which can be attributed to alcohol consumption. These are available in various forms and can be bought over-the-counter from your local pharmacy.
Head Back to Bed
If all else fails, head back to bed and try to get some sleep. You may feel better after a few hours rest, but if not, start from number 1 again and work your way through our list.