Hangover cure finally found: Sprite
Chinese researchers discover how to stop that morning after feeling before it's even started
Like the philosopher's stone, the cure for a hangover seems to exist only in legend.
The magical elixir has evaded even the most determined of scientists, at least until now.
Chinese researchers applied themselves to the problem from another angle, looking into how a hangover could be handled before it even started.
And they claim they have found an answer: Sprite.
It is believed that some of the nastier symptoms of a hangover are not actually caused by the alcohol itself, but by the process of the body trying to break down the alcohol.
This is why the 'hair of the dog' is sometimes thought to work in staving off a hangover, because it prevents the body from continuing to break down the alcohol.
After drinking, the body goes through a two stage metabolic process to break down the ethanol.
First the liver metabolises the ethanol into acetaldehyde through an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and then it breaks it down into acetate by aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH).
However while acetate is generally considered harmless and even responsible for some of the more beneficial effects of drinking, exposure to the more pernicious acetaldehyde actually causes the symptoms of a hangover, including nausea, vomiting and a headache.
Researchers at Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou examined the way a number of drinks affected the way the body metabolised alcohol.
Analysing 57 different drinks, including herbal infusions, teas, and carbonated beverages, they measured their effects on ADH and ALDH and discovered each brew had a different effect.
While some herbal teas slowed down the process, thus prolonging a hangover, Xue bi, a carbonated drink known as Sprite in Britain, was found to actually speed the enzyme’s work up. This means that Sprite could ease a hangover because it shortens the body's exposure to acetaldehyde.
The researchers plan to perform another independent study to ensure their test results can be considered conclusive. The results were published in the Royal Society of Chemistry journal Food and Function.
- 3 The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
- 4 Phil Neville backtracks on Tomas Rosicky 'I'd smash him' comments from Match of the Day 2
- 5 British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Paris attacks: Do not call Charlie Hebdo killers 'terrorists', BBC says
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Asteroid narrowly scrapes past Earth: how to watch the closest space rock for decades as it flies by
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Prince Philip set to be knighted by Australia: Celebrate by reading his greatest gaffes
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Opportunity to join established...
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: On behalf of a successful academy i...
£45000 - £50000 per annum: Investigo: My client, a global leader in providing ...
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: WEST LONDON - An excellent new opportunity wit...