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Tags:   Skills,   Fun,   Going out,   Bachelor's party

By Mila Camilleri   -  July 25, 2014

The weekend is upon us, and tomorrow morning most of us will know what it’s like to wake up after a wild night and feel like death is knocking at our door. There are various theories as to how to cure a hangover, and SWAG is pleased to provide some extremely original ones from various exotic places around the world.

There are some things you can do to avoid suffering the full effects of a hangover that most of us already know. Things like drinking water (especially before you go to sleep), taking a cold shower, having a meal before going out to drink and not mixing different types of alcohol.


Experts suggest that men shouldn’t drink more than 3 to 4 units of alcohol a day. One unit is equivalent to 10ml of alcohol. Here are some common drinks and their corresponding units:


25ml of spirits – 1 unit – 1 shot

125ml of wine – 1.5 units – a normal glass of wine (half full)

1 can of lager or beer – 1.8 units 

1 pint of lager or beer – 2.3 units


So, that’s the information you need to know about how much you’re supposed to drink, and what to do before the bender.


But we’re here to talk about the after effects and what to do about them.


In our research we noticed an abundance of post-drinking food and drink remedies are pickled and salty. This isn’t merely a coincidence. Salt speeds up your body’s healing process, because when you’re in a hung-over state you’re probably very dehydrated and isotonic water (fancy talk for salty water) is more easily absorbed into the body than plain water.


An interesting remedy we came across originated in Poland. Poles are known for their love of gherkins, so their equivalent to a glass of effervescent Berocca in the morning is a glass of pickle juice. To explain why, we’ll ask you a question. Have you ever noticed how you pee more when you’re out drinking? Well alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it makes you lose water. The vinegar and salt in the pickle juice help you replenish the electrolytes you lose as a result of peeing so much. Kind of like Gatorade, but not.


The Russians have their own version called Rassol, which is a solution of salt water used to preserve pickled products. We can’t imagine that smelling or tasting very pleasant, but there you go.


Similarly, part of a German Katerfrühstück, or hangover breakfast, is something called rollmops which are raw pickled herrings wrapped around pickles and onion. Lovely.


Moving on to Japan, Umeboshi are pickled apricots that are renowned for their medicinal qualities. They don’t just cure your hangover, they help with digestion, fight toxins, alkalise blood and have been used to combat nausea and diarrhoea for hundreds of years. The downside is that they taste horrible. Oh well, you can’t have it all.


In Mongolia, it’s common to consume tomato juice… with pickled sheep’s eyeballs the day after you’ve overindulged in alcohol. You’d need to have a pretty awful hangover to try that one out.


Meanwhile, our Mediterranean neighbours over in Sicily, for some reason, use dried bull’s penis as a cure. Chewing on it apparently restores virility or, something like that.


The next couple of cures come from the good old USA. The Native Americans also discovered that salt was handy when they weren’t feeling their best. However, their solution was to lick sweat off each other. Then there’s Pellet Tea. The Old West cowboys apparently steeped rabbit droppings in hot water and made a solution that was apparently high in potassium and a sure-fire hangover remedy. We think they should have just eaten a banana.


In Puerto Rico, rubbing lime or lemon in the armpit of your drinking arm while consuming your moonshine is believed to stop a hangover from afflicting you. Apparently lemon combats dehydration, but to us it sounds like a load of hogwash.


Finally, in Haiti, voodoo practitioners would stick 13 black pins in the cork of the bottle that made you drunk thus scaring the spirit’s left over spirit away. That wouldn’t work today: most alcoholic drinks are doing without corks nowadays, wine included.


Most of these weird and wonderful cures actually have some science behind them, but nowhere in the world does there seem to be a miracle hangover cure – sorry lads. But if you do decide to try any of them out, do let us know. A video would be even better...




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