‘Tis the season for parties, prosecco and, sadly, punishing hangovers.
As we spend our nights flitting from office do to family get-together to drinks with schoolmates, our days are inevitably spent with pounding heads and nauseous stomachs.
Yesterday was in fact the most hungover day of the year, when the most people are talking about their hangovers online.
Very hungover looking guy next to me on the train clutching a McDonalds like its the only thing keeping him going.
— Ed (@eddo_) December 15, 2017
The trouble is, each person you speak to has a different supposed cure, from fry-ups to hair of the dog.
According to nutritionist Amanda Hamilton, there truly are certain foods that help cure a hangover.
Top 10 foods to beat a hangover:
It’s not just about what you eat though - there are other things you can do too.
Tips to get over a hangover
1. Drink lots of water
“Sip throughout the day, aiming for approximately 1.5-2 litres each day, but remember you’ll get some of this from food,” says Hamilton. Your urine should be straw coloured - any darker and you’re dehydrated.
2. Choose your breakfast wisely
If you can stomach food in the morning, Hamilton recommends eggs with avocado and tomatoes. Most of us, however, crave carbs on a hangover, so if you fancy toast, Hamilton recommends sourdough as it’s easier on a sensitive stomach. Toast with nut butter is a simple and healthy option too.
“If you can’t face food first thing, start with a homemade smoothie with a coconut water to hydrate and replenish lost electrolytes together with banana and spinach, or vitamin C rich berries,” Hamilton advises.
3. Exercise will help
Hamilton recommends a short HIIT workout when hungover, if the prospect of moving doesn’t make you feel nauseous.
“It won’t speed up the rate that alcohol is metabolised or detoxified but the endorphin release could boost your mood. Just keep water handy so you don’t become even more dehydrated.”
4. Take a bath with magnesium salts
If nothing else works, pop magnesium salts into the tub and take a long, hot bath.Then just go back to bed.
And what about all the supposed cures that people harp on about? Well, there are a lot of myths around.
Hangover cure myths debunked
Caffeine may help wake you up, but two main symptoms of a hangover are nausea and tremors, both of which are made worse by caffeine.
Hair of the dog
“Although a hangover is very different from alcohol withdrawal, it might produce acute discontinuation syndrome, which a little alcohol could relieve,” leading Harley Street nutritionist Rhiannon Lambert explained to The Independent.
“However, this isn’t a good long-term strategy and isn't something I would ever recommend,” she adds. Ah.
Lambert explains that the severity of your hangover is impacted by your blood alcohol level, as well as the quantity and speed at which you drank.
“The actual hangover reaches a high when the blood alcohol level returns to zero and this is when those feelings and side effects begin,” she says. “So ultimately, all you’re doing is delaying the inevitable and prolonging the headache.”
A full English
According to a study from earlier this year, a big greasy fry-up could be the best way to make you feel better after a night of drinking.
The study - carried out by British Lion eggs - found that more than a third of Brits recovered in less than three hours after eating a full English, compared to 19 per cent who just took painkillers.
Six healthy breakfast recipes to try
However, a systematic review published by the British Medical Journal concluded that there is no evidence that any real cure for a hangover exists.
But, Lambert says, “you can help your body to feel wonderful again by eating well and hydrating the body.”
Then we can all be back on the tiles as quickly as a 19-year-old at the start of Freshers’ Week.