January 1st, 2013
04:45 PM ET
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We're typing very, very quietly.

Many of you may have rung in the New Year in a wholesome, healthy fashion. You raised tankards of kombucha tea while hot-yoga posing in the form of a celestial stag and then rose at dawn to hike to the top of the nearest promontory and bask in nature and celestial majesty. That's wonderful. Good for you.

The rest of us crammed as much onion dip, pigs-in-a-blanket and stale Christmas candy as physically possible into our gaping maws, and then spilled bottom-shelf booze, beer and cheap Champagne in there so it wouldn't feel lonely. Today huuuuurrrrts, and the only surefire cure would be to journey back in time to stop the damage before it began.

The main source of pain is dehydration and most of the preventative work (chugging water and not drinking so darn much) has to be done before you go to bed - but a few things can be done to ease the suffering.

Take ibuprofen if there are no signs of nausea or upper abdominal pain - after you have drunk a fair amount of water. Per our friends at CNN Health, taking an acetaminophen-based medicine in conjunction with alcohol can cause liver damage, while taking aspirin in conjunction with heavy daily alcohol use has bleeding risks.

Coffee can help relieve the side effect of sleep deprivation that often accompanies a long night of revelry, but it doesn't tackle the main problem. Your best bet is to eat something light as soon as you can, drink some water (or Gatorade, Pedialyte or coconut water to help replenish some electrolytes) and slip back under the covers. That fuels your body to repair and re-energize itself.

Unfortunately, many popular food cures, scientifically speaking, seem to just be window dressing for the actual problem: the dehydration. But if they distract you from your state of misery, who are we to stand in the way? We asked our readers how they cope after an evening of excess.

Some revelers advise crawling into a carb and comfort cave:

@CarolBlymire: Salty french fries, Coca-Cola with lots of ice cubes, small sips of chocolate milk, then back to bed.

@dimsumNYC: Gotta be some dimsum and dumplings! #chinesefood #carbs

@mylastbite: Bangers, Beans on Toast, Fried Eggs & Black Coffee!

@OnBlank: Four slices of toast with butter and Vegemite.

@misstanya: pierogie also helps

There are those who hatch their recovery plans over eggs:

@Carolineoncrack: Americano, eggs in purgatory and lots of water

@j_cohl: #hangovercure corn waffles with fried chicken,topped with chili and poached eggs..

@ItsTripp: Eggs and peanut butter.

Others take a more virtuous path to healing:

@SashaLyutse: yoga + kombucha #hangovercure

@noshfecksphoto: i need a banana smoothie (sugar and potassium) and then i need to get a russian/turkish bath or sauna & sweat that booze out!

@Beekman1802Boys: don't drink so much?

Many turn to the burn of spicy food to sweat out what ails them (though experts doubt the veracity of that, hey - whatever works):

@FarmerRussell: warm bath w eucalyptus followed by a big bowl of pho

@mexicanity: try spicy food to sweat the alcohol out of your system, like chilaquiles or hot menudo #mexicanwisdom

@anthony_lamas: Posole!!!

Plenty turn and face that nipping dog again, armed with some liquid courage:

@CarveSlayer: favorite hangover cure: coconut water, a giant icy mimosa, grease, & a CSI marathon on TV.

@cookinwithchris: bacon and toast with a Bloody Mary

@westpatravel: Champagne (a la James Beard)

@bronacos: Irish Coffee, it's the Holy Trinity cure... alcohol, caffeine & sugar!

@cookwithcheftom: More booze, a couple of Advil, and a ton of water.

It's all business, no brunching or boozing for those who just wish to be done with it:

@danmericaCNN: Pedialite, but it works for late night fiscal cliff work, too.

@culinologist: 3 excedrin and a big glass of water before you go to sleep-

And there's always another route:

@RedTamara: chocolate milk, huevos rancheros and/or nasty sex. But you probably can't use that last one. #hangovercure

@chulegre: Once in Mexico- "veril de toro"- a bull's penis chopped up in tomato juice. I swear I'm not lying. #hangovercure

And we raise a cup of tea in our feeble, trembling hands to The Lead producer Ed Meagher for hipping us to this passage from Kingsley Amis's 1954 comic novel "Lucky Jim":

"He lay sprawled, too wicked to move, spewed up like a broken spider-crab on the tarry shingle of morning. The light did him harm, but not as much as looking at things did; he resolved, having done it once, never to move his eyeballs again. A dusty thudding in his head made the scene before him beat like a pulse. His mouth had been used as a latrine by some small creature of the night, and then as its mausoleum. During the night, too, he’d somehow been on a cross-country run and then been expertly beaten up by secret police. He felt bad."


Got a surefire hangover cure? We're all ears in the comments below.


10 hangover remedies: What works?
Hanging tough: relief from over-imbibing

soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. Chaz

    Huh... people should go here and fill out a survey. http://curecrowd.com/ailments/hangover then we can know for sure! As of now milk thistle is the winner.

    February 28, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
  2. Chaz

    People should just go to http://curecrowd.com/ailments/hangover and enter what works for a hangover we can get to the bottom of this. Haha. So far it looks like milk thistle the winner!

    February 28, 2014 at 10:17 pm |
  3. Codock

    A bit gross but... The few times I've had a hangover I took a hot shower, popped a b-vitamin and then drank as much hot water with lemon as I could manage and went to bed. Once I woke up to use the restroom, I'd take a couple swigs of Milk of Magnesia and more water then back to bed. Generaly an hour or so later the magnesia would wake you up with an Urgent nature's call and you'd swear everything you ever ate or drank just came back to haunt you but... Clean up and head back to bed and I was right as rain when I woke up in the afternoon.

    January 6, 2014 at 1:05 am |
  4. Mark

    I use to drink and party frequently until I had my twin daughters 2 years ago. I tried everything that is known to cure a hangover. The only thing that worked for me is it have a glass of water or more with ever drink. It sucks that you have to pee more but it definitely works.

    January 2, 2014 at 1:09 pm |
  5. Steve

    Someone said a turkish bath? Must be living a rough life..

    January 2, 2014 at 11:18 am |
  6. nat

    i was told to use pedialite when you can finally hold something on your stomach. i tried it, no flavor kind, in about 30 minutes after drinking a qt. of pedialite, i was as fine as before i got drunk. no nausea, no headache. in fact, had i not had to go to work, i might have gone out & partied some more.

    January 2, 2014 at 4:43 am |
  7. CocktailHourTV

    Opuntia and silymarin capsules before you imbibe. Water and ibuprofen before you sleep. Done.

    January 2, 2014 at 1:43 am |
  8. Charley Whistle

    Water. If it's just a headache, at least a quart over about 20 minutes. As well as helping with the dehydration the article mentioned, it gently cleanses the digestive tract, rinsing as it goes down. If you can't hold water down, wait about 5 minutes then slowly drink another 8 ounce glass of water. As long as you can't hold it down, repeat every five to ten minutes. At some point you will have cleaned out your gut and the water will stay down. Then drink another glass of water every 10 minutes or so. You'll feel a lot better in an hour or two. If you've been really sick, you may want to try something like Gatorade or Powerade but only AFTER you've been able to hold the water down for at least an hour.

    January 2, 2014 at 1:22 am |
  9. jackSmith

    Orange juice

    January 2, 2014 at 1:14 am |
  10. Mike Jesse

    ALKA SELTZER BEFORE YOU GO TO BED!! I promise it works!! couple extra ibuprofen won't hurt either..

    January 2, 2014 at 12:58 am |
  11. MomOf5


    January 2, 2014 at 12:51 am |
  12. Josie Behnke

    Don't want a hangover, don't get drunk. I had very little last night...BUT on a night I have drank to that point, lots of water, powerade, and pain killer...plus actual sleep. Works every time.

    January 2, 2014 at 12:41 am |
  13. MTS

    Drink lots of water before you go to bed, with a side of ibuprofen. The next morning, eat toast with honey on it, some fruit, and tea. Basically, you just got done putting a delicious and wonderful poison in your body, so treat your body right with healthy food and fluids.

    January 2, 2014 at 12:36 am |
  14. john dough

    paracetamol before sleeping

    January 2, 2014 at 12:34 am |
  15. mim

    The #1 best cure for a hangover is to not drink. Most people don't know that alcohol can destroy your entire body except hearing. Yes, it is a poison and yes, the more you drink, the more damage you can't see is being done except when your vision, teeth, skin, hair, taste, smell, and touch and mental function are compromised. As widely accepted as drinking is, it's the excesses that will get you every time. It's easy to forget a hangover and turn around and get drunk again only to have another hangover until one day you might find it's easier to just drink all day long. Wake and bake is not just for pot heads. Oh yeah, one more thing alcohol destroys – relationships.

    January 2, 2014 at 12:08 am |
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