Had a few too many recently? Who can blame you, the festive season just passed and that means many of us indulged a little more than we thought we would on some booze and decadent meals! This means hanging out the next day in bed and when we finally muster up the courage to emerge from our slumber, the world is spinning and the belly grumbles for some greasy grit to calm the stormy waves down. It’s only natural but did you know not only can you cure your hangover using herbs, you can actually prevent the hangover from ever occurring?! Music to the ears, I know. It’s true! Before we can get into the specifics, let’s talk about some science.
Why do we get hangovers?
Hangovers actually peak when your body is purging itself of the remaining alcohol in the system. Basically, as we consume alcohol, our blood vessels relax and begin to enlarge as a result. Once too much alcohol is consumed, the vessels in the head enlarge and begin to ache or throb. Hangovers are essentially a multitude of symptoms that arise after the excess consumption of alcohol and can last for up to 24-48 hours.
How to we prevent or cure a hangover?
- Fermented Turmeric! In Okinawa, Japan, home to the largest population of centenarians in the world, Fermented Turmeric has been a long time cure for hangovers. Actually – in Japan as a whole, Fermented Turmeric is a hangover cure. This popular super herb is great as it fortifies the liver, soothes the lining of your stomach and also reduces the secretion of bile or stomach acid, aids in digestion, reduces inflammation (bye bye puffiness and bloat!), and calms and prevents nausea. Hello, Superherb! Acording to research the best way for your body to digest Turmeric is if it’s fermented. Thank you Okinawa – as wise as you are richly populated with folks over 100 years of age!
- Milk Thistle. Again, this is all about the liver. Milk Thistle cleanses the liver and increases the production of important compounds that help metabolize the alcohol.
- Coconut Water – Rich in electrolytes and potassium, coconut water replenishes the dehydration caused by alcohol consumption.
- Aloe Vera – Helps to soothe the lining of the stomach, so again reducing the acid and helping the pH of your system.
When trying to prevent or cure a hangover, there are a few key points to remember. Alcohol is broken down and processed in our liver. This is why it’s important to support and detoxify our liver. We should also focus on staying hydrated as alcohol is a diuretic. If you eat enough either during or before drinking, the alcohol will not hit you as hard and you should focus on soothing the lining of your stomach. To prevent bloating or puffiness the next day think about anti-inflammatories for prevention. Of course, the best way to prevent the day after woes is to abstain from drinking. If I’m being honest though…I prefer functional medicine and small indulgences. Cheers, everyone! [cue clinking of glasses].