The older you get, the more difficult it is to nurse and cure a hangover. Not to mention, it takes even longer to recover from one as the years go by. Coffee as a cure for hangovers is a highly controversial topic with many people arguing against consuming coffee the morning after a heavy night of drinking. This has however been refuted by experimental studies which show that coffee can indeed cure a hangover, but how exactly does this happen? Allow us to explain.
What is a hangover?
According to the Mayo clinic, a hangover is a group of unpleasant signs and symptoms that can develop after drinking too much alcohol. We’ve all been there before, waking up the morning after an exciting night of drinking and feeling dizzy, extremely thirsty or with a persistent headache. Sometimes, in extreme cases, all of these symptoms occur at once. It is an unpleasant feeling and often leaves us feeling miserable. Though many people experience it often, it is generally believed to be caused by alcohol, but hangovers are actually caused by dehydration, this is because of frequent urination during the consumption of alcohol.
Are there any cures for a hangover?
In short, no there are most certainly no official cures for a hangover, although many, many people wish that there was one. There are however lots of creative homemade hangover remedies that people swear by, such as greasy foods, iced cold water or virgin bloody mary’s. None of these have however been labelled an official cure for a hangover.
Coffee hangover cure
The main reason why coffee hangover cures are not recommended are because the main ingredient of coffee is caffeine, making the drink a diuretic. Similar to alcohol, caffeine thus dehydrates the body making it even more difficult for your body to recover from a hangover. Since a hangover is essentially dehydration, coffee is believed to worsen a hangover.
In a research study completed by Thomas Jefferson University’s Michael Oshinksky, it was found that caffeine, strategically paired with aspirin, may be the best cure for a hangover. As Dr. Oshinsky explains, alcohol in the body is metabolized to acetaldehyde, and then to acetate. “The dogma has always been that acetaldehyde causes the headache because it’s poisonous,” says Oshinsky. “But there’s been no direct evidence to demonstrate that.” In his study, Oshinsky proved that consuming coffee and over the counter aspirin alleviated the hangover-induced headache. He went on to say that “If you drink a small amount of alcohol, three or four hours later, drink some coffee,” he says. “Or take caffeine in some form, like an Excedrin that has caffeine in it. If you take the caffeine at the same time as you drink, it will be gone when the acetate levels are high.”
Based on the research study it has become clear that consuming coffee can indeed be used to cure a hangover, but it must be consumed during the night of drinking to prevent the symptoms of a headache the next morning. Then, after a single aspirin the next morning you’ll be ready to take on another day. Are you likely to roast a pot of coffee during a party or a night out at a bar? Perhaps not, but an even better solution would be to have coffee cocktails or coffee shots – talk about ingenious!