We’ve all been there: that pounding headache, nauseous stomach, and the inability to do practically anything. Thanks, alcohol. Hangovers are an unfortunate yet almost inevitable part of a night of drinking (or day, we don’t judge) that can make you feel like you’ll never touch alcohol again.
Luckily, this doesn’t have to be the case. The wellness market is full of effective hangover supplements with ingredients that give your body the extra boosts it needs to prevent you from feeling awful the next day. To weed out the less helpful ingredients from the ones that’ll really do the trick, we’ve listed some of the best hangover supplement ingredients your body could ask for. With these, the next time you find yourself out a bit longer than you intended, you may not have to spend the next morning hiding under the covers.
Firstly, What Exactly Causes a Hangover?
Before we dive into things, it’s important to understand how hangovers are caused and why our bodies react the way they do when the intoxication has run its course. Ethanol is a chemical found in alcohol that is quite toxic to the human body. When we consume too much of it, it can cause a litany of symptoms including gastrointestinal issues, mood inhibitors and you guessed it — dehydration. Besides not having a proper meal or drinking enough water before you begin having a drink, dehydration is the main reason for nausea and vomiting as well as pounding headaches when you over-consume.
Because of the toxicity of alcohol in general, trying to avoid these symptoms is nearly impossible to do. Luckily, there are a number of companies developing products made of proprietary blends with just the right hangover-fighting ingredients you need to make the morning after feeling a little less killer.
1. Ginger Root
Ginger root is practically magic when it comes to combating hangover symptoms. For decades, ginger root has been utilized to ease upset stomachs, and we all know just how bad our stomachs feel after some wine or cocktails. With its anti-inflammatory properties and natural antioxidants, a few nibbles of this root may be able to get you feeling like yourself again, and not a hungover zombie.
Though ginger ale may taste great, try skipping the soda, and turn to the actual ginger root itself. It may not be extremely pleasant to munch on, but its properties are much stronger when consumed this way, and can have you feeling better faster. Plus, a few bites of ginger root beats having a tummy full of booze, right?
2. Key Vitamins and Minerals
Though it may sound cliche, taking key vitamins and minerals can do wonders for your booze-filled nights at home or out at the bar. Alcohol is a diuretic, making your body flush out a lot of the vitamins it is trying to hold on to. When we lose these nutrients, hangovers hit extra hard, leaving us feeling, well, like death.
Nutrient-rich vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, and zinc have all shown promising protective properties towards hangover symptoms. With potassium acting similarly to electrolytes, zinc assisting with cell growth, and magnesium enhancing performance, even your worst hangover symptoms can feel subdued. By enjoying essential vitamins and minerals, your hangover is in your hands.
3. Milk Thistle
Milk thistle is one of the world’s most popular (and best) ingredients within the best hangover supplements. This herbal remedy has been utilized for years because of its protection of the liver from damage that things like alcohol can bring. Now, we see the ingredient being used within full-fledged hangover supplements, typically coming in pill or tablet form for easy consumption and quick preparation for your night on the town.
Though milk thistle on its own cannot totally stop a hangover from happening, it can give your liver some pretty serious protection, leaving your symptoms to be a bit less killer than usual.
Another ingredient that you will most definitely find in only the best hangover supplements is dihydromyricetin. Extracted directly from the Japanese Raisin tree, dihydromyricetin, or DHM, has been utilized for centuries for its properties in helping to combat the effects of hangovers. When taken before drinking, studies have found that DHM can actually lower blood alcohol levels or reduce circulating levels of alcohol in the blood.
DHM has helped a lot of us manage the pounding headaches and general weakness we have to endure, even when we drink responsibly. So, if you keep up with the water between cocktails and take a bit of DHM before you get too far gone, your future self will definitely thank you.
Otherwise known as NAC, N-acetylcysteine is a popular dietary supplement full of antioxidants and liver-supporting properties that have been said to take hangover symptoms head on. This specific supplement has been reported to boost our body’s production of certain antioxidants naturally, which, in turn, reduces the toxicity levels that alcohol consumption brings. So while it can’t prevent a hangover, it sure can make it feel more manageable.
NAC is easy to consume, fairly readily accessible, and quite inexpensive compared to other hangover supplements. Dubbed one of the world’s best hangover “cures” without negative side effects, utilizing this special supplement may be a game-changer for you and your alcohol intake
6. Prickly Pear
Known specifically for being able to reduce inflammation in the liver, prickly pear is alcohol’s worst nightmare. The prickly pear cactus contains various beneficial antioxidants, as well as providing high levels of vitamins and nutrients. The more we consume this powerful fruit, the more our body is packed full of the nourishment it needs to tackle the toxins that alcohol brings. With prickly pear, headaches, nausea, and fogginess don’t stand a chance.
Prickly pear extract is all-natural, typically coming in pill or liquid form; though, depending on where you live, you may be able to find it in its natural plant form, too. No matter how you choose to take it, most suggest consuming the tasty cactus about five hours before indulging in your drink(s) of choice.
Using Only the Best Ingredients in Your Hangover Supplements
When it comes to actually finding the best hangover supplement for you, paying close attention to the ingredients it utilizes is important. Supplements like Active by Ivita contain almost all of the ingredients above in order to help cut our hangover symptoms in half, keeping our bodies retaining only the most nourishing properties, and nothing else.
So, before the next time you’re getting ready to step out for some cocktails, take a second to consider your body (and how you may feel the next morning). When you make the effort to consume supplements that are crafted specifically for alcohol’s overwhelming toxins, your body can fight off what it needs to and preserve much-needed rest. Then, you can enjoy your blurry nights and still wake up with a clear mind and a settled stomach.