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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Prevent a Hangover

The other day I mentioned a study that found the severity of a hangover is related to the color of the alcohol, which was a reflection of the chemical composition of the drink. There's more to hangover chemistry than just the color of the drink, however. For example, some people's biochemistry essentially makes them immune to hangovers. These people can detoxify the alcohol, acetaldehyde, and congeners quickly enough to escape most of the negative effects of alcohol consumption, except maybe the effects of dehydration, since the enzymes responsible for clearing the body of alcohol and its metabolites require water.

If you are not a member of that lucky 25-30% of people who don't get hangovers, you can minimize your chances of suffering by avoiding deeply colored drinks, staying hydrated, and limiting your consumption. Keep in mind, some alcoholic beverages contain enough contaminants that it's not the alcohol that gives you the hangover, so even one drink might be enough to make you sick. If you do find yourself suffering from your holiday celebration, there are several hangover remedies you can try.

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