Festive partying seems like a good idea until you wake up with your tongue stuck to the roof of your mouth and your head beating like an African drum. But is there really anything you can do to relieve the morning after the night before? Sue Baic, a dietician and spokeswoman for the British Dietetic Association, says that prevention is the best policy: “If you can dilute your alcohol or intersperse it with soft drinks, you will do much to avoid the dehydration and drop in blood-sugar levels that trigger the symptoms.”
She recommends steering clear of red wine — its congeners, the coloured chemicals, can worsen an aching head — and pacing yourself. “Try to have fluids, such as water, coffee or orange juice before bed and the next morning,” she says. “If you can face food, then eat some.”
Such is the desperation to find a hangover remedy, that this month a Twitter campaign has been hunting for a cure. If all else fails, go to bed and stay there until the world becomes clearer.
Theory: An extract of the milk thistle plant — available as a tablet or a liquid — is thought to aid liver function and help the body to metabolise alcohol more quickly.
Hangover rating: 2/5 Milk thistle contains silybin and silymarin that have been shown in some studies to protect the liver from toxins and to possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. However, most studies have been carried out on alcoholics and there is no proof that it can help to cure or prevent a hangover.