Normal metabolic and physiological changes related to aging can have a significant impact on our body’s ability to cope with these changes, so the same number of drinks that were fine at 30 can be a morning-after disaster in the making when you’re over 50. Mankind has been suffering through hangovers ever since alcoholic drinks were invented, and no real remedy has ever been found.

Alcohol effects the central nervous system and changes the balance of brain chemicals. Colorless liquors like vodka and gin tend to be a little gentler to the body when it comes to after-effects. The idea that some strong coffee will sober you up is a total myth - and even worse, the caffiene can lead to dehydration and actually make your hangover worse. But here are some other things that can help:

- Keep it clear. and when you have a bad one, the latter starts to sound good.

If you’re finding that Saturday coffee paper cup night cocktails are making for some miserable Sunday mornings, you’re not alone. Research suggests that drinking fruit juices or sugary beverages can decrease hangover intensity, so don’t use diet soda as popcorn bucket your mixer.

- Forget the herbal hangover remedies. As some very wise person once said, the only real cures for a hangover are time and death ….Figuring out how to avoid a hangover is like planning for retirement; the older you get, the more important it is.

Moderation, of course, is the best form of prevention. Red wine and malt liquors like whisky contain compounds that tend to produce more severe hangovers. Having a drink to cure your hangover is like throwing gas on a fire to put out the flames. Depending on what stage of hangover you’re in, having a morning-after drink will either just postpone the inevitable or makes you feel a million times worse immediately.

Women need to be particularly aware of this, since women appear to be more prone to hangovers than men, no matter what their age. Having food (particularly fats, like meat or cheese) in your stomach when you start drinking can slow the body’s absorption of alcohol.

- Don’t try to cure it with coffee.

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- No “hair of the dog” treatments.

- Keep it sweet. As we get older our tolerance for alcohol may change - and if you don’t take that into consideration, you could be in for some whopper surprise hangovers.

- Eat before you drink

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