Horror hangovers and how to avoid them

February 2, 2023
1 min read

PHIL PARKER, as we know, is a wine legend and therefore, a seasoned pro at the art of hangover maintenance.

Okay – just about everyone who has a fondness for alcohol has at some stage, if not quite often, over-indulged and then felt the repercussions the following day.

Hangovers are very personal and vary from drinker to drinker.  A colleague who I talked to yesterday, regularly imbibes 750 ml of wine a night with no ill effect but suffers slight headaches if she has another few glasses.  Certainly, the volume consumed is directly proportional to the physical and mental damage.

Personally, if it gets to the point where I’m unsure of how many glasses I had – but it’s about 1am and I’m on Facebook dispensing swathes of wisdom and hilarity, then there is a very good chance that I will be unwell the next morning. For me, it pans out as nausea, mental confusion, dehydration and a pounding headache.  The day proceeds with a leaden gloom, foul mood, general feeling of loss of will to live, and an inability to form complete sentences.  This generally doesn’t disappear for about 24 hours.

So – is there a cure for hangovers?

Yes.  Duh? Don’t drink too much.

Nah, but yeah truly – is there a cure for hangovers? I hear you ask.
Not really, but there are some measures of damage control which appear to have some scientific backing:

  • Drink as much water as you can during the evening and before you go to bed to alleviate symptoms caused by dehydration.  Continue drinking fluids the next morning.  Sports drinks, such as Gatorade, relieve dehydration, and replace electrolytes. The downside is (hopefully remembering) to get up in the night frequently to relieve the bladder.
  • Painkillers – Aspirin, and ibuprofen help to reduce headaches and muscle pain.  But don’t use them if you have any gastric pain or nausea, because these painkillers are also gastric irritants and can add to stomach lining irritation. Paracetamol is a more gentle option.
  • Eggs are thought to help with breaking down toxins associated with alcohol breakdown
  • Ginger – either tea or in pill form can help to relieve nausea
  • Bananas help to replace potassium and other electrolytes
  • Fruits and fruit juices replace vitamins and nutrients, particularly vitamin C
  • Berocca and vegemite  (not mixed together, silly).  Both good sources of vitamin B.

Then there are Ye Olde hangover cures – which you may wish to try: pair of pickled sheep’s’ eyes in tomato juice, tea brewed from rabbit droppings, or the more familiar Prairie Oyster: a whole raw egg and Worcestershire sauce, seasoned with salt and pepper. The aim is to swallow it in one gulp without breaking the yolk.


Steel has been penning his pungent prose for 40 years for publications too numerous to mention, most of them consigned to the annals of history. He is Witchdoctor's Editor-In-Chief/Music and Film Editor. He has strong opinions and remains unrepentant. Steel's full bio can be found here

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