What’s that? You’re trying to dress up in fine eveningwear, lop the neck off champagne bottles, hold lit fireworks in your hands, zip down balustrades, swing from chandeliers, yell at the stroke of midnight, and throw household appliances off your balcony without feeling like an idiot on the first day of 2014? You got it.
2013 was a great year for weird hangover cures. Several respectable research labs took time out of their day to ensure that, during the holidays, at least some bad deeds go unpunished. Here’s a list of the most convincing entries.
Apparently, Sprite has been thrown around by home remedy aficionados for some time — so much so that Chinese researchers from Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhuo decided to get to the bottom of its purported curative powers. In a real study published in a real scholarly journal, the team showed that the soft drink accelerates the breakdown of alcohol by the enzyme aldehyde dehydrogenase, effectively cutting your hangover short. “These results are a reminder that herbal and other supplements can have pharmacological activities that both harm and benefit our health,” Edzard Ernst, an expert in medicinal science at the University of Exeter in the UK, told reporters about the study.
2. Mashed Potatoes
Comfort food is the trusted grandparent of hangover remedies. College lore dictates that even the most ridiculous escapades are easily offset by piles of greasy food taken in the wee hours by the light of the fridge. But aside from taking your mind off your headache, do these dishes really do anything to abbreviate your hangover?
The answer is yes — at least if you trust a recent study from British experts, who all agree that foods like mashed potatoes represents a reliable way out of anxiety and pain. Speaking to the Daily Mail, gastroenterologist Nick Read said that these dishes essentially provide a “better foundation.” “It’s not about lining your stomach as such — but if you put fat in your stomach before a drink, once it gets into the duodenum [the first part of the small intestine] it will slow down gastric emptying, so that drink will not be emptied so quickly from the stomach,” he said. “This means you’ll get drunk less quickly, which could mean a milder hangover.”
3. Rhinoceros Horns
Obviously, these remedies are reserved for the faint of heart. If you’re ready to run with beasts, you have to look where beasts run: the African grasslands. With a little luck and a lot of cash, you might just be able to score what some say is the most potent hangover elixir out there.
We’re talking, of course, about horns severed from the heads of poached rhinoceros. The practice, which has more or less decimated all five species of the ancient herbivore, is supposedly hailed by Vietnamese businessmen as a reliable and luxurious way to cure everything from headaches to cancer. Usually, the horns are ground up into a fine powder and snorted “like cocaine.”
With a sprinkle of rhino dust, you will undoubtedly feel like a king, because even a low-shelf horn will run you about $200,000. For comparison, the same volume of 24k gold costs about $77,000. Additionally, you will have done your part in speeding up the inevitable extinction of the Javan Rhinoceros — a much-coveted species of which there are literally 40 animals left in the world.
4. Hydration Spa
Of course, all of these methods involve at least some degree of what most hangover-suffers seek to avoid at all costs: the application of basic motor skills. But that’s OK, because if you really want to quell your body without moving a muscle, you can always hook yourself up to an IV station and while the day away at one of Hydration Station’s two U.S. locations. Here, a team led by board certified physician Thomas Roepke will feed a solution of saltwater, vitamins, and “anti-nausea” drugs right into your bloodstream while you just carry on watching the Home and Garden Channel on one of their tablet computers.
Their website — which is peppered with images of men lifting women into the air, highballs coming together over nightclub tables, and hands undoing the wire cage on champagne bottles — assures prospective clients of the numerous benefits associated with the therapy. That said, the experience itself is apparently a big part of the allure. "People come in, they want to share stories about the last marathon they were in, or if they are here for a little overindulgence, they like to talk about their night out," CEO Keith McDermott said, speaking to Business Insider. "It's become a social thing."