December 22, 2005

All hangover ‘cures’ are useless: study

LONDON (Reuters) - Forget aspirins, hairs of dogs and hot
baths, the only sure way of avoiding a hangover is not to drink
in the first place, according to a new study.

Researchers led by Max Pittler of the Peninsular Medical
School at Exeter University, surfed the Internet and combed
medical databases to study a range of hangover cures from the
traditional to the novel.

Their research roamed from the humble aspirin to fructose,
artichokes and even prickly pears but found no silver bullet.

However, they did hold out some hope for the potential of
borage, a bright blue herb with star-shaped flowers used
traditionally to decorate gin-based summer cocktails.

But their conclusions were sobering.

"No compelling evidence exists to suggest that any
complementary or conventional intervention is effective for
treating or preventing alcohol hangover," they wrote in the
British Medical Journal on Friday.

"The most effective way to avoid the symptoms of
alcohol-induced hangover is thus to practice abstinence or
moderation," the added.