We know you’re a responsible drinker who would never get so drunk that you end up staggering into work eating a sausage roll and drinking a Lucozade Sport. And yet here we are on the edge of Christmas, a time when even the most health-conscious man can get thrown off course by a free bar and karaoke. Drinking is as much a festive tradition as mince pies and flashing reindeer sweaters, but it doesn’t have to end with you feeling like you need to be read your last rites. We asked Dr Wayel Jassem, consultant liver surgeon at the Bupa Cromwell Hospital in London, how to avoid a hangover.
01. Think before you drink
The journey to a milder hangover begins before the booze. “You should make sure you have a full stomach before you start drinking, which will help slow down the absorption of alcohol,” says Dr Jassem. “Your body can safely metabolise about 10ml of pure alcohol per hour – about one small glass of wine, with lunch – so limit your intake to that.” Alcohol dehydrates you too, so match non-alcoholic drinks to your alcoholic ones. However, notes Dr Jassem, “studies show fizzy water can speed up alcohol absorption so you’re better drinking still water. It could also explain why people report feeling more drunk when they drink champagne.”