What are some natural hangover remedies?
Alcohol is dehydrating, which affects your central nervous system. Your liver—the primary organ responsible for metabolizing and detoxifying alcohol—works overtime to clear it from your system. In the meantime, you’ll likely experience a headache, low blood sugar and/or nausea. People with food sensitivities may also react to ingredients in alcoholic beverages, such as corn, wheat or barley.
To the rescue
1. Rehydrating is a primary objective. If plain water isn’t appealing, drink peppermint tea or a beverage with electrolytes and restorative herbs like elderberry, suggests Los Angeles herbalist Amanda McQuade Crawford.
Try: Solixir Restore Pomegranate Ginger ($25 for 12 12-ounce cans; vitaminshoppe.com).
2. Eating a small snack and drinking tomato juice or water with lemon juice and honey will help stabilize blood sugar levels. Lemon juice also stimulates the liver to produce bile, which helps detoxify your blood, McQuade Crawford notes.
3. Homeopathic nux vomica supports the liver; take 30c potency before bed and the next day, following package directions, Barnes recommends.
Try: Boiron Nux Vomica 30c ($8; vitaminshoppe.com).
4. B vitamins, vitamin C and evening primrose oil also help clear toxins from your system; take one B-50 or B-100 complex supplement, 1,000 milligrams vitamin C and 2,000 milligrams evening primrose oil before bed.
Try: Nature Made Balanced B-50 and B-100 Complex ($9 and $13 for 60, respectively; drugstore.com); Nature’s Bounty Time Release Vitamin C ($10 for 100 500-milligram capsules; drugstore.com); Mother Nature Evening Primrose Oil ($15 for 180 500- milligram capsules; herbalremedies.com).
5. Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) and globe artichoke (Cynara scolymus) can help your liver detoxify alcohol. Take 500 to 2,000 milligrams, depending on your gender, weight and metabolism. “If you’re a 120-pound vegetarian, start with 500 milligrams. For a 200-pound male who has some alcohol tolerance, the higher dose is better,” says McQuade Crawford.
Try: Jarrow Formulas Milk Thistle ($13 for 200 150-milligram capsules; iherb.com); Source Naturals Artichoke Extract ($15 for 180 500- milligram tablets; amazon.com).