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by Gillie Whitewolf

Hangovers.... well you've only got yourself to blame for this one... but luckily there are a nuumber of remedies to get you back on your feet - and a number of preventatives to put in to action before your next night out!

The morning after the night before....
Not exactly a herbal remedy, but eggs have a long history as a hangover cure, and contain a chemical now known to neutralise the effects of alcohol - so that [organic, free-range] fried egg sarnie the morning after could do you the world of good. Vegans fear not, there are many herbal remedies to take the place of the egg :

Lavender flowers makes an ideal cuppa for calming the throbbing pain of a hangover, it also soothes the digestive system and assists the liver.
Thyme tea will ease both the headache and the queasy stomach associated with hangovers. Ginger tea will soothe the stomach, and Peppermint tea with a little organic honey will eash the headache, begin the rehydration process, soothe the stomach and relieve nausea.
Fizzy drinks are another good option, both for soothing a throbbing head and for alkalising an acidic stomach. Umeboshi Plums are also alkalising - try soaking one in hot water for 5 minutes before eating the plum and sipping the water [a Macrobiotic remedy].

A decoction of Dandelion Root is higly regarded for it detox actions, working principally on the liver and gallbladder to help remove waste products. It also stimulates the kidneys to remove toxins in the urine.

Milk Thistle [Cardus marianus] is renowned for protecting the liver from damage resulting from alcoholic and other types of poisoning. The seeds contain silymarin - capsules of these seeds can be taken to remedy a hangover and the damage over-indulging can do to your liver.

The following Garlic cure was apparently employed after Bacchanalian orgies in Ancient Rome : Peel all the cloves from a large head of Garlic and place them in a pan with half a pint of red wine. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 20 minutes. Strain and share with fellow hangover patients. The alcohol is boiled off whilst the tannins, and the curative properties of the Garlic, remain.

Once you're up to eating replace natural minerals by eating a vegatable broth - choose vegetables which are high in potassium, such as Celery, Beetroot, Carrots and Courgettes. Eating live yoghurt will replace intestinal flora lost during the alcohol attack and soothe a sore stomach.

The night before the morning after the night before....
What's better than a hangover cure? a hangover preventative! Barbara Griggs states that Oil of Evening Primrose is "extremely effective at forestalling hangovers" - try taking 4 capsules of Evening Primrose Oil before you go out drinking, and more at the end of the evening.
The Romans regarded eating almonds as the ideal method of countering the effect of alcohol, and Gerard concurs that “5 or 6 being taken fasting do keepe a man from being drunk” [1597].
And one of the best preventatives? drinking water - alcohol dehydrates you, this is one of the main reasons you wake up with a throbbing head and sandpaper mouth. Pace yourself through the evening, drink water before you go out, while you're out and, most importantly, at least a pint of water before you go to sleep. And just to make sure I've got that 'sounding like your mom' thing down to a T - "don't go drinking on an empty stomach!" You're about to attack your stomach lining - give it some form of defense.

OK, lecture over! Now go enjoy your night out - and the morning after.

The herbal remedies mentioned in this article are not intended to replace professional advice. Any medication you are on should also be taken into consideration - always check with your healthcare professional if you are on prescription drugs before taking herbal remedies.


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