It's the freakin' weekend, baby, and you're about to have you some fun, but what do you do the morning after all the fun? You know, when you're lying in bed and your head is killing you and — oh, god, has the sun always been this bright? — and you're not sure if you can get up to close the blinds, but, suddenly, you have to get up because you're definitely going to barf and nope, false alarm, but wait — FALSE ALARM ON THE FALSE ALARM.
Alyson Mitchell, a professor and John Kinsella Chair in the department of food science and technology at the University of California, Davis, is arguing that science needs to devote more time and money to understanding hangovers and developing a cure (other than "stop drinking," which is probably the best one) — not for our own comfort after a night of heavy boozing like the one you might be planning this weekend, but because, according to Mitchell, companies in the U.S. lose an estimated $148 billion per year on hangover related costs (i.e. people calling in sick or being less productive on the job).
Mitchell speculates that in the past medical researchers have shied away from attempting to find a hangover cure because they worry that it would encourage excessive drinking (it would), but the truth is that people have been developing their own homebrew hangover cures since the dawn of time. Greasy breakfasts and hair of the dog are two time-honored classics, but everyone has their own particular method.
Case in point, I polled the Jezebel staff.
Dodai, Lindy and Tracie are all in the Soda Club, which means both that they swear by morning-after soft drinks and that they'd make an awesome all-girl doo-wop group. Dodai recommends a full-fat, full-sugar coke. Mexican cokes are best, but the most important thing is that it has real sugar and not high fructose corn syrup. Lindy is devoted to her "hangover Sprite" (yet another thing she has in common with Drake) and Tracie tries "to get through it with about 3,000 calories of orange soda."
Our editorial fellow Meher drinks two Camel Backs (or as she calls them "water binkies) of water before going to sleep at night and then wakes up and eats something salt and potato based. She's one of many who has a specific food choice — our other fellow Kristine swears by a bowl of udon, both because it's hydrating and it calms her stomach. Katie, on the other hand, keeps it simple by going with bagels (coupled with Netflix and bacon "all in equal measure").
Jenna had the most precise and vast knowledge of hangover cures, recommending everything from aspirin (never ibuprofen because it's too hard on the stomach) to specific high protein/high carb breakfasts (like oatmeal with bacon or a bagel with smoked salmon) to "taking a few swigs of pickle brine in the morning" alongside a big glass of water and a couple aspirin. She learned the latter method from a friend from Russia who explained that "the brine tastes good, has electrolytes, and it makes you thirsty — so you drink water."
My cure is the most rudimentary of the lot seeing as it only consists of lying in bed, feeling a swirling mix of guilt and shame and waiting for it to get dark again so that the terrible day will be over and I can go back to feeling human again. I do not recommend this method.
Now tell us yours!
Image via Shutterstock.