Read an Excerpt
Folk Remedies That Work
Alcoholism And Social Drinking
If you have a drinking problem and don't already know the government and private agencies that offer counseling, see the end of this chapter. Meanwhile, we offer suggestions to help curb the craving, along with our prayers for your recovery.
- Angelica root or angelica leaves (available at health food stores) have glutamine, an amino acid that's said to inhibit the urge for alcohol. Make tea of the herb by pouring a cup of just-boiled water over one teaspoon of angelica. Let it steep for ten minutes. Strain, add honey and lemon to taste, and drink three cups a day.
- Chaparral is a very healing herb originally used by Native Americans. Available at health food stores in capsule form. Take one capsule after every meal. It can help detoxify the liver and can curb the craving.
- Changes in your daily diet can increase your power to resist taking a drink. Let fruit, vegetables, and whole grains take the place of white flour, sugar, and all sugar products. Fortify food with B-complex vitamins by adding wheat germ and brewer's yeast to soups, stews, and cereals.
- Suck on a whole clove (the kind used in cooking) to get rid of the urge to take a drink. It's not a pleasant thing to do, but it has been known to work.
Affirmation: Whenever the thought of a drink enters your mind, repeat the following sentences over and over
I am strong. I am brave and I have control. I am getting better and better.
Drunkenness Prevention: In the (translated) words of Greek philosopher Aristotle, "Dine well on cabbage just before starting out for a big evening." In case the Romans demand equal time, here's a quote from Cato who said, "If you wish to drink much at a banquet, before dinner dip cabbage in vinegar and eat as much as you wish. When you have dined, cut five leaves. The cabbage will make you as fit as if you had had nothing and you can drink as much as you will."
What it all seems to mean is, eat cole slaw before you imbibe and you won't get drunk.
Or: Eat ten raw almonds on an empty stomach and it is said to keep you from an inebriated state.
Sober Up:Slowly eating a small grapefruit should help you sober up.
Or, get someone to juice fresh radishes for you and slowly drink half a glass of the juice.
A dark brown taste, a burning thirst,
A head that's ready to split and burst.
It is not time for mirth and laughter
The cold gray dawn of the morning after.
If you're foolish enough to drink enough to have a hangover, then you deserve it! But...putting our personal feelings aside, we arm you with imbibing information and guidelines, prevention methods, and symptom soothers.
Information And Guideline
- Cigarettes and booze contain the same hangover-causing ingredient, acetaldehyde. So when you drink and smoke, you can expect a hangover from hell!
- Eat before you drink. Drinking on a full stomach slows down the body's absorption of alcohol; the slower the absorption, the less amount of alcohol reaches the brain.
- Drink twice the volume of non-alcoholic beverages as alcoholic beverages to help avoid dehydration of your body cells.
- If we thought you were interested in technical data, we'd tell you about the manufacturing by-products called "congeners" that cause all those nasty side effects from drinking. Instead, we'll tell it to ya straight
These are the worst drinks in terms of hangovers: bourbon, brandy, rum, scotch, rye, cognac, whiskey, red wine, and champagne. Speaking of champagne, any bubbly alcoholic beverage, or even booze that's mixed with a carbonated drink (gin and tonic), will get into the bloodstream much faster because of the bubbles.
These are less bad than the worst drinks in terms of hangovers: vodka, gin (without the tonic), and white wine.
- The average body burns alcohol at the rate of about an ounce an hour. Drink slowly. What's the rush? (Or is that the answer?)
- Considering that the body burns alcohol at the rate of about an ounce an hour, for each ounce of alcohol you consume it will take at least an hour before you have full driving faculties. So, if you have had four ounces of alcohol by eight p.m., you should not dare to get behind the wheel of a car until the earliest midnight! Let's face it, chances are you're not going to stop drinking at eight p.m. Be smart. At the start of the partying, assign a non-drinking designated driver!
- Don't keep up with a friend drink for drink. Your friend may be twice your size and can drink twice as much without facing the consequences, Use your head more than your mouth.
- For women only: if you drink right before you menstruate, when the estrogen level is low, you will get drunk faster and have more severe hangovers than during any other time of your cycle.
- Incidentally, according to researchers at the Mount Sinai Medical Center, women absorb about out one-third more alcohol into their blood than men. They get drunk faster and stay that way longer.
Hangover Minimizer: Take a B-complex tablet (50 mgs) before you start drinking and another one while you're drinking. Alcohol depletes the body of B vitamins, and by replenishing them, you can almost make a hangover not happen.
Hangover Prevention: When you've finished drinking and are ready for bed, stir a tablespoon of sugar into a glass of orange juice and drink it down.
This remedy came to us from a woman who took care of an alcoholic for years. She said that it prevented him from everhaving a "morning after" hangover.