Nursing a hangover this morning? Our Drinkhacker has just the cure. While you’re washing those bananas down with water, read up on why you feel terrible in the first place:
• Dehydration — “Each 250ml of alcoholic beverage will produce up to 500ml of urine. So, it is easy to see how a long night of drinking can lead to significant dehydration,” said Burke. While this is common knowledge, there’s a lesser-known twist to dehydration’s impact: Along with all that peeing go the vitamins and minerals you need to survive.
• Acetaldehyde toxicity — Alcohol breaks down into something called acetaldehyde, which is essentially a toxin, a close cousin of formaldehyde, said Dr. Victor Sierpina. It causes headaches, nausea and vomiting — and the more AcA in your body, the worse you feel. Burke said AcA toxicity is the primary driver of hangover symptoms.
• Glutamine rebound — Alcohol doesn’t just make toxins, it also prevents the body from creating certain nutrients. Glutamine, an amino acid that controls the nervous system, is one of them. Glutamine production falls while you drink, then goes into overdrive when you stop. This sudden burst of glutamine makes you anxious and irritable … and is why you can’t get back to sleep while you’re nursing your hangover.
• Short-term alcohol withdrawal — It’s like “Trainspotting” on a very small scale. After a binge, you go through withdrawal, which can include (more) anxiety, mood swings, depression, a racing heartbeat, nightmares and even more fun stuff.