Originally published April 16 2011
Part I: Naturally Prevent, Relieve and Eliminate Unpleasant Hangovers
by Tony Isaacs
(NaturalNews) Most of us who drink alcoholic beverages have over-indulged on occasion and most often paid for our excesses by being cursed with a nasty hangover. It might be argued that the bleary-eyed, queasy, head-aching "morning after" is a just reward for not exercising better judgment and restraint. However, even though we know better, hangovers do happen to some of us. Using a bit of common sense and natural remedies, you can help prevent future hangovers and take the bite out of ones that do happen.
Hangover symptoms include headache, nausea, sensitivity to light and noise, lethargy, dysphoria, diarrhea and thirst, typically after the intoxicating effects of the alcohol begin to wear off. Symptoms may persist for several days after alcohol was last consumed. Hypoglycemia, dehydration, acetaldehyde intoxication, glutamine rebound, and vitamin B12 deficiency are all believed to be causes of hangover symptoms.
Here are some commonsense guidelines and natural remedies to use to prevent hangovers:
Obviously the best way to prevent a hangover is to avoid heavy alcohol consumption. Try to alternate with a glass of water between drinks and avoid sugary, flavored drinks that can mask the amount of alcohol consumed. Drink a tangy drink to help stop the urge for alcohol, such as tomato with lemon juice, and a dash of cayenne pepper added.
One tip that may help avoid a hangover or at least lesson the symptoms is to avoid drinking on an empty stomach. Another tip is to rehydrate by drinking 2-3 large glasses of water before you go to bed. Drinking alcohol is very dehydrating and re-hydrating helps counteract the effects of alcohol.
Sports drinks are usually high in electrolytes and can help replenish what the kidneys have excreted during drinking. Take before bedtime. Note however, that most commercial sports drinks may contain unhealthy items such as high fructose corn syrup, refined sugar, artificial colors and flavors and more. For a recipe for a healthy and delicious natural sports drink and other tips about dehydration, see:
One remedy for lessening the morning after pain is: Drink a large glass of water before you go to bed, take a B-complex supplement that supplies at least 50 mg of niacin, and take a liquid bitters preparation (look for products that contain dandelion, gentian, mugwort, or Angostura bitters) in water with a little honey (raw organic is best).
Another suggestion is to use wheatgrass. Wheatgrass is a natural detoxifier. The chlorophyll in wheatgrass helps clear toxins, heals the intestines and maintains a healthy pH balance. In addition, it delivers powerful antioxidants and enzymes to support the body. Drink a glass at the end of the night and then again the morning after to further detox and energize.
Acetaldehyde is a digestive byproduct of alcohol that is a major cause of hangovers. Bifidus is a "friendly" bacteria that detoxifies acetaldehyde. Put a teaspoon of bifidus powder in a glass of water and drink before going to bed.
The seeds of the herb milk thistle (silymarin) have a long history of protecting the liver. Take 70 to 120 mg once before drinking.
* Native Americans claim that eating 6 raw almonds before imbibing helps prevent intoxication.
* Evening primrose oil helps prevent hangovers. Take two teaspoons before going to bed.
* Prickly pear cactus extract is also reported to be effective as both a preventive and a remedy.
Note: Avoid taking over the counter pain relievers such as aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen before or after a hangover. All of them can have dangerous side effects when combined with alcohol, including excessive blood thinning, stomach bleeding, and liver damage.
In the second part of this article, we will take a look at how to naturally relieve and eliminate hangovers if you do get one.
Sources for this two-part article included:
About the authorTony Isaacs, is a natural health author, advocate and researcher who hosts The Best Years in Life website for those who wish to avoid prescription drugs and mainstream managed illness and live longer, healthier and happier lives naturally. Mr. Isaacs is the author of books and articles about natural health, longevity and beating cancer including "Cancer's Natural Enemy" and is working on a major book project due to be published later this year. He is also a contributing author for the worldwide advocacy group "S.A N.E.Vax. Inc" which endeavors to uncover the truth about HPV vaccine dangers.
Mr. Isaacs is currently residing in scenic East Texas and frequently commutes to the even more scenic Texas hill country near Austin and San Antonio to give lectures and health seminars. He also hosts the CureZone "Ask Tony Isaacs - featuring Luella May" forum as well as the Yahoo Health Group "Oleander Soup" and he serves as a consultant to the "Utopia Silver Supplement Company".
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