What happened last night?
What happened last night?

I can’t for the life of me figure out why the pharmaceutical industry hasn’t jumped into the hangover curing market. It’s wide open. Consider this: beer, wine and liquor sales were about $130 billion according to the 2007 census, which means if just a small percentage of the people buying booze wound up with hangovers, we’re talking about a multibillion dollar business. There’s not much on the market specifically billed as a hangover cure (notable exceptions include a drink ironically called THC and an effervescent tablet called Drinkin’ Mate).  But we were more interested in hearing about the homemade varieties. So we reached out to the MainStreet community and you provided us with some pretty interesting concoctions. We also trolled the Web and found some even weirder stuff. Let’s start with sheep eyeballs. Yeah, you read that right. Photo Credit: toddwickersty

Baaaaaaaaahd Hangover
Baaaaaaaaahd Hangover

According to CoolJunkie.com, Mongolians are responsible for a creation that I think qualifies as a cure that is worse than the disease. “Genghis Kahn’s crew would eat pickled sheep’s eyeballs and wash it down with a mixture of brine and tomato juice,” they write. Yeah, the last time I pillaged a village, my head was really pounding the next morning. Those sheep’s eyeballs went down so smooth, but I had a little trouble with the brine and tomato juice. Seriously though, 45 minutes later I was ready for more marauding. Photo Credit: edans

Nasty but Delicious Food
Nasty but Delicious Food

For years people have said that the best thing for a hangover is greasy food, but according to Joey, who lives in Chicago, there’s a particular kind of greasy food that works best in St. Louis, his former hometown: “It doesn’t sound like this would cure anything, but people from St. Louis know where to go the morning after a wild night: Courtesy Diner - specifically for a ‘slinger.’ A slinger is a breakfast dish comprised of the following: eggs, hash browns, hamburger patties, cheese, onions and, most importantly, CHILI. To outsiders it may sound unappealing. I was skeptical when I first moved to St. Louis during law school. But you can’t argue with results. Maybe it works because the slinger has so much going on that it confuses and distracts your stomach from the previous night’s booze?” Sounds good. For me it was the Tastee Diner in Bethesda, Md., and my grease of choice was a Tastee Muffin, which was basically a ham, egg and cheese on an English muffin. But the key was to eat it at the end of the evening, before going to bed. Photo Credit: Daquella Manera

Exfoliate, Exfoliate, Exfoliate
Exfoliate, Exfoliate, Exfoliate

Normally we don’t include blatant PR pitches in these articles, but I couldn’t resist this one. Jill, who works at Bikini Kitty in Portland, Ore., suggests the following: “Have found that using dry body brushing really helps bust that hangover... Target lymph system in armpits and groin area (just the area we target for better shave/wax exfoliation) is perfect to get the system moving and clear out the toxins... thinking the hard drinking Japanese figured this one out a while ago-- and it DOES work!” Jill then goes on to pitch a Bikini Kitty product that one could use for this very purpose. OK, ladies, I’d appreciate it if the next time you go out on a bender, scrub the hell out of your pits when you wake up the next morning and then report back to us. Jill, apologies for the skepticism, but we need some independent verification here. Photo Credit: daisydoubleoh

The Wine-o’s Cure
The Wine-o’s Cure

Alicia from Colorado sent us her own special take on the ‘hair of the dog’ remedy. “Beaujolais, especially Beaujolais Nouveau, is the best hangover remedy. The sugar in the wine brings your blood alcohol level back up and makes you feel great even though it’s for only a short period of time. The sugar in the wine makes you crash a bit after about 1 1/2 hours.” I’ve definitely downed my share of Beaujolais in my time, often by myself… once while watching a Quantum Leap marathon on the SciFi channel (I refuse to refer to it as SyFy)… and I can tell you with reasonable certainty that the last thing I wanted the following morning was more Beaujolais. Alicia may be right about the importance of replenishing your blood sugar, but keep in mind that consuming sugar–laden alcohols in the first place is what often leads to really horrible hangover headaches. Photo Credit: jetalone

The Televised Hangover
The Televised Hangover

While searching out hangover cures, we were made aware of a TV show on FLN (Fine Living Network) that, as luck would have it, is covering this very subject. The show, Three Sheets is doing Hangover Cures Week, in which the host flies around the world, gets wasted with the locals and then samples their hangover cures the following morning. Sounds like an amazing job. Some of the cures seem a bit specious to us: swimming with the dolphins in Tahiti and an Elvis-themed wedding in Vegas. Others, however, are the real deal, at least locally. In Hong Kong, host Zane Lamprey “participates in ‘fire-cupping,’ the painful practice of applying suction cups to one's back to relieve what locals call ‘stagnation in the blood’ that comes from a night full of drinking.” Now that’s good TV. Photo Credit: FLN

Herbal Assistance
Herbal Assistance

Randy Paynter, CEO of the website Care2.com sent us a link to an article on the site about natural hangover remedies, including a popular herb, which also happens to be one of the most important ingredients in Chicken a la Schreiber. “Drink a cup of thyme tea to recover from a wild time. It will ease headache, nervousness and the queasy stomach of a hangover more effectively and safely than over-the-counter sedatives or pain relievers.” I wonder if my chicken dish can be used as a hangover cure too? Photo Credit: Kalle Svensson

Magic Pills
Magic Pills

We heard from Lisl, a Chinese herbalist in Connecticut who offered up a kind of a miracle cure for hangovers. We generally view such claims with extreme skepticism, but this one piqued our interest. She writes: “One of the best hangover cures I have had the pleasure of sharing is a formula known as ’Pill Curing’ in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Pill Curing is a popular remedy also known as ‘Healthy Quiet Pills’ and in Pinyin it is called ‘Kang Ning Wan.’ It works well for nausea, vomiting from morning sickness, hangover, flu and food poisoning too. Once I gave it to a friend on New Year's Day after she had a night of tying it on too tight; we had plans for breakfast and I wasn't about to let her cancel because of a hangover! I gave her three tablets that she insisted it would do nothing for her most horrendous hangover. In 20 minutes, her headache and nausea were completely gone and we proceeded with our plans. Since then, all her friends (who like to drink a lot) often call me before a night out to get my magic hangover pills!” Lisl goes on to say that a number of companies make this pill, but her brand of choice is, “Golden Flower which has replaced the glutinous ingredients to make it safe for those with celiac disease.” Photo Credit: HolisticChineseHerbs.com

Where’s Your Kilt?
Where’s Your Kilt?

In Scotland they love their whisky and they seem to have developed a special cure for hangovers related to this particular libation. The U.K.’s Telegraph explains: “The ancient Scottish cure for a whisky hangover is the Highland Fling. If you’re not feeling too sick, heat a pint of buttermilk and stir in a tablespoon of cornflower. Then season with salt and pepper. “ What about haggis? Doesn’t that work? Sadly, we may never know. Photo Credit: joelogon

If You Can Crawl to the Kitchen...
If You Can Crawl to the Kitchen...

Some hangover cures involve cooking. This one certainly does… kind of. Check out the list of ingredients for Crazy Larry’s Hangover Cure: 1 Meringue pie top, 2 apples, 7 dozen eggs, 10 saffron threads, 1 cup cottage cheese, 8 oz. tequila, 1 London Broil, 1/8 tsp. salt You’ll have to visit NewsPirates.com for the actual recipe, but we felt it was important to include this part: “Fold cottage cheese into egg mixture. Pour into pockets. Drink meat-flavored tequila.” Feel better now? Photo Credit: alexik

Trippin’ on Tripe
Trippin’ on Tripe

In Romania and Mexico, people who have tied one on often feast on tripe soup the following day. Tripe, in case you’ve forgotten, is made from the lining of a cow’s stomach. MSN-Singapore has this to say about it: “It's essentially a low-cost form of low-fat protein, salts and liquid in the ideal concentration to speed up the process of rehydrating the body after a big night out. We are entirely sure about the science behind this, and we think the sting of the spices provides a welcome distraction.” They also note that chicken soup pretty much does the same thing. And you thought you were so special, tripe. Photo Credit: Kent Wang

The Japanese Hangover
The Japanese Hangover

Anyone who’s ever had too much sake knows that it can lead to a splitting headache. The creatively named website, WeirdAsianNews.com has an interesting article about a variety of Japanese hangover cures.  It’s kind of a cottage industry over there. Our favorite example involves something called “umeboshi pickled plums.” They write, “For a normal hangover, bite off about a quarter of a plum and keep it in your mouth until it dissolves. For a whopper hangover, herbalists recommend popping a whole plum into your mouth. Continue to suck on it for about an hour after the plum has dissolved.”

Had enough?
Had enough?

So, now that you’ve been armed with strange hangover cures from around the world, you might be interested to know who among us is drinking the most. A little while back MainStreet released its survey of the Drunkest States in America, based on alcohol sales. Does your state make the list? Photo Credit: wickenden

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