Although there are tricks that have been able to be effective in specific cases, the researchers warn of the lack of evidence.


In the midst of these Christmas holidays in Spain, there are not a few who will spend – or will have already spent – with the dose of alcohol ingested. The punishment will be the consequent hangover the next day. To all this must be added the thousand and one “tricks” to reduce or even “cure” said hangover, some of which we have already demystified in EL ESPAÑOL.

Now a team of researchers from King’s College London, South London and the Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust have carried out a systemic review on current evidence of possible hangover treatments. Their findings have been published in the journal Addiction.

The specialists assure that the scientific evidence found is of very low quality, and they ask that more rigorous studies be carried out in the future to be able to demonstrate certain effectiveness in charge of the antiresca remedies analyzed, with the aim of providing health professionals and the general public with more precise information.

Today there are numerous anti-hangover remedies, which claim to be effective for one or more of your symptoms. Among the 21 randomized clinical trials analyzed by this review, substances such as clove extract, red ginseng, Korean pear juice, and other traditional cures anti hangover.

Some studies did show statistically significant improvements in hangover symptoms, but the evidence found was of very low quality, mostly from the methods used in the studies or imprecise measurements. Furthermore, none of the trials studied the same remedy, and none of the results could be replicated in following works.

Of the 21 clinical trials included, in addition, 8 were conducted only in men. In general, studies were very limited, both in the nature of the alcohol used and the circumstances of its consumption. In addition, it is not clarified when the alcohol that theoretically caused the hangover was ingested. To curl the curl, there were considerable differences in the type of alcohol administered, and some do not clarify whether or not it was taken with associated food.

On the other hand, the review authors are surprised that none of these clinical trials have evaluated the use of common pain relievers like acetaminophen or aspirin compared to placebo. In most cases they were non-drug food supplements, or combinations with anti-inflammatories or other less common drugs.

Between the elements analyzed we can find curcumin, probiotics, L-cysteine ​​and N-acetyl-L-cysteine, vitamin combinations (thiamine, pyridoxine and vitamin C), loxoprofen, naproxen and fexofenadine, clove extract, Acantopanax polysaccharide extract, red ginseng, juice of Korean pear, L-ornithine, prickly pear, artichoke extract, Morning-Fit (a mixture of dry yeast, thiamine nitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, and riboflavin), propranolol, tolfenamic acid, chlormethiazole, and pyritinol.

Most of these elements contain B vitamins, especially in the form of a mixture without a clear dose guideline. But in very few cases drugs have been tested. As explained by the researchers responsible for the review, future studies should carry out more rigorous methods, including validated scales to assess hangover symptoms. Likewise, the participation of women in studies is lacking.

As you well remember, hangover symptoms can cause significant discomfort, affecting work and academic level. Likewise, they highlight the continuous speculation on the part of the media advertising alleged anti-hangover remedies that clearly do not work or have scientific evidence behind them.

It’s about a topic of interest both at the level of health professionals and at the level of the general population that it should be studied thoroughly. At the moment, the researchers release the most logical recommendation: to avoid a hangover, the best option is to completely abstain from alcohol, or at least drink in strict moderation.