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Hangover Prevention Supplement Market Outlook


Does Alcohol Cause Heartburn?

What options are available for consumers who want a product to prevent or cure hangovers? The following is a brief outlook of what is available in terms of hangover prevention supplements.

Dihydromyricetin (DHM)

Some are calling DHM the “Antidote to Alcohol”. It is a Chinese herbal extract used in traditional Chinese Medicine to prevent hangovers. Despite being extremely popular in Asia, it did not garner any attention in the rest of the world for quite some time. However, DHM’s popularity began to soar after promising research was released in 2012.

The research described DHM as an “Anti-Alcohol Intoxication Medication”. Benefits of DHM include:

  • Preventing Hangover headaches, nausea, and next day cravings.
  • Reducing feelings of intoxication and preventing drunkenness.
  • Reducing certain symptoms related to alcohol withdrawal.
  • Preventing and repairing damage caused by the liver due to alcohol consumption.
  • Reducing oxidative stress induced by drinking.

Dihydromyricetin is able to achieve these effects by acting on both the liver and the brain.

In the liver, DHM enhances the activity of two key enzymes, ADH and ALDH. These enzymes are responsible for breaking down not only alcohol, but alcohol’s toxic by-product, acetaldehyde. Helping your body metabolize alcohol faster reduces feelings of intoxication. But helping your body metabolize acetaldehyde more quickly is most important. Acetaldehyde is over 20 times more toxic than alcohol itself. It is responsible for a number of hangover symptoms including headaches, nausea and sensitivity to light. Getting acetaldehyde out of your body as quickly as possible not only reduces hangover symptoms, but is vital for a healthy liver.

In the brain, DHM binds to GABA receptors and blocks alcohol’s effect on them. Even though this does NOT decrease blood alcohol content, it decreases feelings of intoxication, prevents next day cravings, and reduces certain alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

DHM may be the most effective hangover prevention supplement, but it isn’t the only one, and it doesn’t prevent all causes of a hangover. To address the role dehydration plays, DHM should always be taken with a couple glasses of water.

Chaser Plus

A couple years ago, Chaser Plus was the most well-known and widely used hangover prevention supplement. Even though it has been removed from the market, its active ingredient is cheap and easily obtainable.

Chaser plus is nothing but well branded and ingeniously marketed activated charcoal. Activated charcoal has a very high degree of micro porosity which allows it to absorb what is around it. If you take activated charcoal before drinking, it will absorb not only some of the alcohol you consume, but also some of the acetaldehyde that is created as alcohol is metabolized. This will help reduce hangover symptoms.

It is not recommended to take activated charcoal at the same time as DHM. Because activated charcoal absorbs what’s around it, taking it at the same time as another supplement will nullify its effect. If you wish to take DHM and activated charcoal at the same time, take the DHM first, and wait at least one hour before consuming activated charcoal. This will allow the DHM to be absorbed into your stomach before the activated charcoal is consumed.

Vitamin and Electrolyte Blends

Branded vitamin and electrolyte blends make up the majority of the hangover prevention market. Despite this fact, they are largely ineffective. It is true that drinking large amounts of alcohol can cause electrolyte imbalance and certain vitamin deficiencies which exacerbate hangover symptoms. However, acetaldehyde poisoning is the main cause of hangovers, and these types of supplements don’t help reduce acetaldehyde levels. Drinking Gatorade throughout the night is just as effective as taking vitamin and electrolyte blends.

That is not to say these types of supplements won’t reduce hangover symptoms. They can help, but it is best to take them along with Dihydromyricetin or earlier in the day, prior to taking activated charcoal.


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