Can hangover be prevented or even eliminated completely with a natural and safe ways?
The essence of a hangover
Before you can use the natural hangover cures, you have to first understand what is causing hangover. The most common causes of hangover are:
- Acetaldehyde – Alcohol metabolism creates a substance called acetaldehyde, which is considerably more toxic than alcohol itself. Acetaldehyde occurs primarily when your liver burns ethanol, but also certain alcoholic beverages has it. Glutathione which is “super antioxidant” produced by your body, fights and neutralizes acetaldehyde, but unfortunately livers glutathione stocks are finished after two doses of alcohol. After that acetaldehyde begins to accumulate too much, which is one of the main causes of a hangover symptoms.
- Dehydration – One of the direct cause of drinking alcohol is dehydration. Alcohol is a diuretic which means that it increases urine output. When you drink alcohol, the alcohol slow down function of vasopressin (the antidiuretic hormone). After this, your body starts to push fluids faster to a bladder which result you to urinate more often. This will lead to dehydration and cause symptoms like headache and mild dizziness.
- Other reasons that causes hangover – Fatigue and weakness may be low blood sugar levels caused by alcohol, as well as the fact that alcohol impairs sleep quality.
In this article we will explore the natural hangover cures. Many people prevent or mitigate hangover by taking NSAIDs, not knowing that it can be really harmful to your liver. Therefore, I recommend every one to combat hangovers with these safe ways. Please note this is not medical advice.
Natural hangover cure recipe
Choose your drink wisely
The drink choice is perhaps the most important step if you are looking for smaller hangover. Contrary to what many think, the worst choice is beer, cider and wine. Distilled beverages such as vodka, gin, tequila and whiskey do not produce nearly as bad hangover as than dark rum, brandy, wines and beers. Distilled pure beverages have a lot less byproducts from fermentation (aroma compounds) which cause hangover. So if you want to prevent hangovers, select clear beverage and avoid dark ones. More about drink choices here, and here.
Eat and hydrate before drinking
Make sure you do not start drinking already in dehydration. Drink at least 2 liters on that day you are going to drink. Eat a lot protein during the day such as meat, vegetables, and especially a fat, such as butter and coconut oil. Many people believe that eating saturated fats protects the liver from harmful effects of alcohol – at least if you are a rat. There is no any kind warranty, but it’s always good to “Stack the odds in your favor”.
Boost your defences with supplements
- Vitamin C
Vitamin C increases your body’s self-generated antioxidant glutathione activity. Glutathione is one of the body’s most effective cleaners, it binds to fat-soluble toxins such as heavy metals, solvents and pesticides, as well convert them into water-soluble form so that the body can eliminate them in the urine. Vitamin C is one of the most effective ways to increase glutathione in the human body.
“Supplements of vitamin C are more effective at increasing intracellular glutathione than taking oral glutathione supplements. Oral supplements of whey protein and of alpha-lipoic acid appear to help restore intracellular levels of glutathione.” – Glutathione
Chlorella is certainly the most famous “Detox” super food that has a good reputation as natural hangover cure. Several refer to Dr. Fukui research in the Sapporo Medical University. Study told that: taking 5 grams of chlorella before alcohol consumption, reduced 96% of hangover symptoms. It seems to impossible to find the original study, at least in the English language. So I dont know how that study has been done, or it is legit or just a myth.
Anyway I and many others have tested chlorella’s ability to prevent hangovers. I can say that chlorella and its reputation with as hangover cure is truth. 5 grams of chlorella before drinking and possibly also after (if you happen to end up in your own home) reduces hangover greatly.
Chlorella has large amounts of necessary vitamins, minerals and amino acids that alcohol consumption destroys. Chlorella is also said to be effective “heavy metal catcher” that supports liver function and thus helps your body eliminate toxins.
N-acetyl cysteine (NAC)
Number one booster of glutathione is N-acetyl cysteine, which is one of the best precursors for glutathione. As mentioned upper, glutathione fights against acetaldehyde which is one of the main cause of a hangover symptoms.
- B-vitamins in hangover prevention
Alcohol and its metabolite acetaldehyde depletes vitamins from your body – especially the B-1 (thiamine) and B-6 (pyridoxine) vitamins. So taking them before drinking, might lesser hangover symptoms.
Biohacker Dave Asprey recommends vitamin B-1 for as natural hangover cure. But in general more better B-vitamin to prevent a hangover is a B-6 vitamin, it has also some research to back it up.
“Prophylactic vitamin B6 (pyritinol) reduced the number of hangover symptoms by approximately 50% in one study (57). Seventeen men and women attended two parties and were asked to drink the alcoholic beverage of their choice until intoxicated. Fifty percent of participants received 1200 mg of vitamin B6 (400 mg at the beginning of the party, 400 mg 3 hours later, and 400 mg at the party’s conclusion), and 50% received placebo. At the second party, participants received the alternate tablet. A survey instrument of 20 symptoms was used to assess hangover severity. On a scale of 1 to 10, the mean symptom score (±SD) was 3.2 ± 2.8 with pyritinol and 6.8 ± 3.8 with placebo (P < 0.01). The mechanism of this effect is unknown. - The Alcohol Hangover“
I recommend to take full complex of B-vitamins because they are an important co-factor in the production of glutathione. Read more: How Vitamin B Speeds Metabolism of an Alcohol Hangover
Biohacker Dave Asprey, recommends that you take activated charcoal after drinking, but it’s benefits are minimal if you drink pure alcohols such as vodka. I recommend activated charcoal only if you drink wine, a beer or a dark whisky.
Best products for hangover cure
Next I list some of the supplements I am using for hangover prevention.
Choosing chlorella is relatively easy… Pay attention to following factors: Does manufactures offer evidence of purity of the product? Where is it made?
The most popular varieties are Chlorella: Chlorella pyrenoidosa and Vulgaris. Here is best products of both varieties:
HealthForce Nutritionals Chlorella Manna (Chlorella vulgaris)
Clean chlorella product manufactured in Korea and grown in inside pool.
HealthForce tests their chlorella in the laboratory for any heavymetals or other toxics and provides the results in their website. You can see the view chlorella test results at here (pdf).
HealthForce’s chlorella beats all other brands in almost every area.
Better digestation – Normally chlorella grows a very strong protective wall, which must be broken before human can digest chlorella. HealthForce chlorella is growing thin-walled chlorella which wall is broken automatically when dried (HealthForce believes that the absorption is up to 80% better than other manufactures). A potential drawback of this process is that it produces less chlorophyll.
Free of environmental toxins – HealthForce manna chlorella is grown in filtered water and indoor pool. So you don’t have to worry about possible environmental toxins, chemtrails or bird excrement among chlorella.
Better taste – Eating chlorella is not really delicatessen moment. But Chlorella Manna is surprise and taste is quite neutral.
You can choose either a powder or tablet form. I prefer the powder because it is cheaper, but tablets may be more convenient solution for hangover prevention.
HealthForce Nutritionals Chlorella Manna from Amazon.com
If you live outside of U.S, for example in Russia, Singapore, Brazil or Europe, then your best choice is iHerb.com which ships to over 150 different countries, and carries great selection of chlorella and virtually every natural supplement there is.
If you’re first-time customer on iHerb.com you’ll get $5 off from your first order, if you order for more than $40 dollars you’ll get $10 off. You get the discount code automatically from my links and while you’ll benefit from this, I also benefit by getting “iHerb credits” that I can use towards my next orders. Thank you for this!
Sun Chlorella (Chlorella pyrenoidosa)
Packed in Japan, but raised in Taiwan far away from Fukushima. Cell wall is broken with old DYNO ®-Mill Grind method mechanically without chemicals or heat. Grown in outdoor tanks. Sun Chlorella is uses filtered water and if you have purity concerns then look manufactory prosess where the algae is cleaned several times. (check out FAQ also.)
Sun Chlorella (tablets) from Amazon.com
See full facts about: chlorella supplements here.
N-acetyl cysteine (NAC)
For hangover preventation I recommended Jarrow Formulas Nac Sustain from Amazon.com as it’s time released. Glutathione boost from normal NAC tablets last only about 2 hours, so for drinking purposes you might want to take sustain version. (If you dont want to carry NAC tablets with you when drinking.)
I also recommend Now Foods L-cysteine from which you get vitamin C and vitamin B6 at the same time. (NAC is derivated from L-cysteine.)
Too many tablets and capsules? Fortunately the best vitamin C product which I have come across is Madre-C which is made from four vitamin C rich berries (Camu Camu, rose hips, acerola and amla). This is actually real food. One jar will last about six month, if you use it only for hangovers.
If you want basic ascorbic acid instead, this non-gmo is best choice: Nutribiotic Ascorbic Acid Powder
I recommend to purchase a high-quality B-complex vitamin product which will give you all the B vitamins at the same time. I recommend Life Extension Complete B-complex
Life Extension B-Complex (iherb)
Other good products for alcohol consumers
If you want only one product which has almost everything mentioned in this article try: PreToxx for Hangovers & Liver Support
Activated charcoal. Should be found in every home, even when you are not using it for hangover cure. Convenient when traveling abroad if you accidentally eat inappropriate food. Look for other uses here.
Alpha Lipoic Acid Healthy Origins, Alpha Lipoic Acid (best value for money) or for better digestion: R-Lipoic Acid, Super R-Lipoic Acid.
One of the best things to raise glutathione levels is whey protein concentrate (undenatured). It contains large amounts of cysteine, and glycine glutamate acid all of which cooperate to increase glutathione levels. This allows you to basically replace the L-cysteine (50 g whey consertate you get the cysteine as from supplements). Choose not flavored whey protein that does not contain potentially harmful additives or artificial sweeteners. If you want the best undenatured whey from grass fed cows I recommend: Vital Whey ( More info here)
Other glutathione boosters: Avocados, raw eggs, broccoli, cauliflower. Important co-factors: selenium, magnesium, zinc, E, C, B vitamins.
Of course there is also other ways to combat hangover, but these are the most practical and certainly most safest methods that are suitable for most people.
Bonus video: Can drinking alcohol improve your health?
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