Don’t reach for that bloody mary next time after a night of drinking.
The idea that a drink aids hangover symptoms has been around since medieval times, but that doesn’t mean it works. Despite conventional wisdom, a new study found that the practice is ineffective.
“There’s no scientific evidence that having an alcoholic drink will cure a hangover. It will, at best, postpone one,” said Laura Veach, director of screening and counseling intervention services and training at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Hangovers occur when the elevated concentration of alcohol in the blood falls dramatically after drinking stops. Continuing to drink only delays the inevitable, according to Veach.
“Taking a drink the morning after may temporarily make you feel better because you’re putting alcohol back into the system,” Veach said in a statement. “But it doesn’t cure the hangover; it just sort of tricks you by masking the symptoms. They’re going to show up eventually.”
Instead, Veach suggests that those under the weather grab some aspirin, keep hydrated and rest. Still, the only tried and true cure is time.
“There’s nothing we know of that can speed up that process,” Veach said. “Not drinking coffee, taking a shower, standing on your head, getting slapped, walking around outside in the cold. Nothing.”
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