Dec. 31, 2001 -- What hangover cures pop into your throbbing
noggin on New Year's Day?
Some say burnt toast and a Mexican sausage called chorizo do
the trick. But just in case the quick fixes you tried last year didn't fix
anything, and you still plan to do some celebrating when 2002 arrives, we've
assembled some home remedies that helped some of us get through college.
Why can't you just be faithful? Any man who has ever been on the
receiving end of that question, whether dodging crockery or wiping away his
wife's tears, knows that some women would really like an answer. Do men who
cheat really outnumber their female counterparts? Does infidelity in marriage
come more naturally to men than women? And do some husbands think that
"monogamy" is a board game?
"There's no question that men cheat more than women," says Steven Nock, PhD,
a professor of sociology...
But first, here is the official word on what that booze does to
your system. Getting rid of the hangover really comes down to understanding how
the body reacts to alcohol in the first place. Alcohol is a diuretic -- that
is, it tends to increase urination, and therefore, dries you out, explains
alcohol metabolism researcher James
Schaefer, PhD, professor at the Union College in Schenectady, N.Y. Drinking
plenty of water the morning after helps to compensate for the dehydration.
But that's not all that's going on. Impurities are added to alcoholic beverages during the
distillation process, and these contribute to the nasty stomachache you get
with your hangover. These impurities are especially high in sweeter drinks and
malt liquors. Drinking lots of water, then, does two things: it rehydrates your
body and dilutes the impurities left in your belly.
A Date for Carbon
When Brian Wakabayashi was at the University of California,
Irvine (UCI), he always made burnt toast a part of his morning-after breakfast.
Schaefer has this explanation for why that helps: Carbon in the
charred part of the toast filter the impurities. In fact, people who come into
hospital emergency rooms with alcohol poisoning get a potent carbon slurry
pumped into their stomachs for the same reason. The burnt toast is a much more
moderate version of the same remedy.
How about that chorizo? It's not a morning-after remedy -- more
like a late-afternoon-before preventive tactic. Cole Ramsey, also a former UCI
student, swears by its hangover-preventing powers and doesn't leave home
without some -- in his stomach, that is.
"It's fatty, and it sits in your stomach for like 12 hours.
For some reason, the hangover goes away," says Ramsey.