We’ve all done it from time to time surely? Gone out, had a few too many drinks, and then woken up the next morning feeling like death itself. Hangovers are extremely common, just ask most people who go out on the weekends how they feel on a Saturday or Sunday morning. Many people believe that a greasy meal will help cure a hangover, and they could potentially be right, although this is hardly a very healthy approach. When it comes to hangovers, the truth is that apart from making you feel awful, and helping you to gain a few pounds by eating fatty junk food, they may also possess a number of other health risks that you may not have even considered. When we’re young we think we’re immortal. We think we can eat what we want, drink what we want, and get as drunk as we want, and that we’ll wake up feeling a little rough the next morning, eat some junk, and then go out the next night and repeat the whole process all over again. As we grow older however, the damage we’re doing to our bodies becomes more and more apparent, and the hangover like symptoms associated with drinking too much alcohol, can begin to rear their ugly heads. We’ll be looking at some of the potential health risks associated with hangovers.
Dehydration – Hangovers are a result of drinking too much alcohol. Alcohol is actually a poison, meaning that you’re filling your body full of harmful toxins when you get drunk. Alcohol is also a diuretic, meaning that you expel more water than you take in. This can cause dehydration. One of the most common side effects associated with a hangover, is a headache. We experience headaches because we’re dehydrated due to the alcohol. The headache you experience is actually caused by your brain shrinking slightly due to not having enough fluid. A great way of avoiding a hangover, is to not get drunk. Ok, that wasn’t very funny. What we were actually going to say, is that a great way of avoiding a hangover is to drink as much water as possible before you go to bed.
Disruption of sleep – We need sleep to function properly. Alcohol disrupts your body’s ability to get a good night’s sleep, that’s why you always tend to wake up early when you’re hungover. When you are awake, your hangover makes it extremely difficult to get back to sleep.
Loss of electrolytes and minerals – in order to filter and process alcohol out of your system, your body and immune system has to work twice as hard, and as a result, more vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes are used up to complete this function. As you know, all three are extremely good for us, so lacking them in our bodies is not very productive or healthy at all.