Thursday, December 29, 2011

How to Prevent, Treat a New Year's Hangover

Loyola Doctor Advises B Vitamins and Exercise; Coffee and ‘Hair of the Dog’ Don't Work

MAYWOOD, Ill. – New Year’s Eve is fast approaching and many plan on ringing in the new year with a few drinks. Dr. Aaron Michelfelder, a Loyola University Health System family physician, offers these tips on how to avoid the misery of a New Year's hangover:

Before the party:

  • Plan to drink moderately -- a maximum of five drinks for men and three drinks for women during a minimum three-hour period.
  • To prevent inflammation, take an anti-inflammatory drug such as ibuprofen or Aleve.

During the party:

  • Eat first, and then drink, not the other way around. Food slows the absorption of alcohol.
  • Drink slowly.
  • To prevent dehydration, drink a glass of water after each alcoholic drink.
  • Take a B vitamin supplement.
  • After the party:
  • Do not drink and drive.
  • Get as much sleep as possible.
  • The morning after:
  • Take another B vitamin.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Exercise (if you can stand it). During vigorous exercise, blood circulates three times as fast as it does when you are sitting on the couch. And the faster you circulate blood through your liver and kidneys, the faster your body will remove the toxins.

What doesn't work:

  • Coffee will make you more alert, but it won't prevent or help a hangover.
  • Forget "hair of the dog" -- the notion that having a drink can relieve a hangover. It will only make you feel worse.

MEDIA: To interview Dr. Michelfelder, please contact Jim Ritter in Loyola Media Relations, (708) 216-2445 (Office) or (708) 441-7728 (Cell) or at

About Loyola University Health System

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is part of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. Loyola University Medical Center’s campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of Chicago’s Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. At the heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Trinity Health is a national Catholic health system with an enduring legacy and a steadfast mission to be a transforming and healing presence within the communities we serve. Trinity is committed to being a people-centered health care system that enables better health, better care and lower costs. Trinity Health has 88 hospitals and hundreds of continuing care facilities, home care agencies and outpatient centers in 21 states and 119,000 employees.