Jeff on Acupuncture and Your Hangover

Let me be clear: I’m not advocating heavy drinking, binge drinking, or alcoholism. My experience has been that acupuncture doesn’t work well for hangovers two days in a row. But every once in a while, we all need to cut loose a little bit. Sometimes it’s on New Year’s Eve. We shouldn’t feel bad about having a little fun now and again. Even moderation needs to be moderate at times.

You might have never thought of using acupuncture to treat a hangover. Most of us are familiar with your usual hangover cures like “hair of the dog” and that sort of thing. While boozey hangover cocktails come in many shapes and forms, the Bloody Mary is truly my favorite. I make it with all the bells and whistles, from olives and celery to tabasco and horseradish. However, I’m convinced that it’s the freshly squeezed lemon juice that really makes it pop.

Sadly, there’s no real good research on treating hangovers. My guess is that the people who would fund these kinds of studies are lightweights, puritans, or both. While there is some compelling evidence advocating hydration and electrolyte replenishment, the only real cure I know for a hangover is time.

There are a lot of people out there drinking too much. Since OAP sees about 400 + people a week, it means there are a lot of people coming in to get acupuncture who happen to also have a hangover whether they admit it to us or not. Over the years, enough people have come clean that I’ve developed effective acupuncture strategies for treating hangovers. It shouldn’t really be a surprise. At OAP we already treat so many of the signs and symptoms that go along with a hangover: headache, malaise, nausea, sweating, feeling hot, shaky, and generally out of whack.

So if you do find yourself getting a little crazy this News Year’s Eve, just know there’s a place you can go the next day to get your head straight and your health back on track, with no judgement, before you head to brunch. Even if you are not cutting loose, start the year off right with an acupuncture tune-up on New Years Day.

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