While it’s easy to get carried away with the festivities of the holiday season, it’s important to be mindful of the impact that alcohol can have on our health and well-being. Excessive drinking can lead to a range of negative outcomes, including hangovers, accidents, and long-term health problems. However, this doesn’t mean that you have to give up alcohol altogether. In this article, we provide some tips for enjoying alcohol in moderation, so that you can enjoy the holiday season while still taking care of your health.
If alcohol consumption during the holiday season is unavoidable, what measures can be taken to alleviate some of the unpleasant effects of a hangover?
Eating a meal high in fats before drinking or consuming milk about 30 minutes prior to drinking can help protect the stomach. Fatty foods slow down the digestion process and thus slow the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream. It’s important to never drink on an empty stomach as this speeds up the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream and can lead to higher alcohol concentration, causing a more severe hangover.
Consuming foods high in protein and vitamins during the meal, as well as a few dishes with a sweet and sour flavour, like sweet and sour fish or pork, can improve appetite and aid digestion, making it easier for the body to absorb the nutrients in the food. It’s important to avoid salty foods, such as salted fish, sausages, and cured meats, as these contain large amounts of colourants and nitrites that react with alcohol, causing harm to the liver and damaging oral and esophageal mucosa, and even leading to cancer.
Honey water: Honey contains a special fructose that helps break down and absorb alcohol, reducing headache symptoms, particularly those caused by red wine. In addition, honey has a sedative effect, allowing the individual to fall asleep quickly, and wake up the next day without a headache.
Banana: Snacking on bananas can help lower the concentration of alcohol in the blood, reducing the symptoms of heart palpitations and chest tightness. It also helps increase blood sugar levels, which can alleviate some of the symptoms of alcohol consumption. However, please note bananas are not a cure for the effects of alcohol.
However, the best solution is to drink in moderation or not drink at all. Chronic heavy drinking can lead to liver damage.
Long-term excessive drinking is the primary cause of alcoholic fatty liver, as ethanol directly damages liver cells and affects lipid metabolism.
At Link Doctor, we have introduced LiverMultiScan, an assistive tool for diagnosing liver diseases. This non-invasive technology uses multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to quantify liver tissue.
LiverMultiScan provides quantitative measurement of liver fat, as well as the relationship between iron, fibrosis, and inflammation to characterise liver tissue. This technology has been cleared by the FDA 510(k) in the US and CE in Europe, helping clinical doctors diagnose liver diseases and abnormalities.
Patients have the following two options (with a recommended blood test):
- LiverMultiScan: SGD 1180
- MRCP+ : SGD1680
- Complete Blood Cell Count
- Glycated Haemoglobin
- Lipid Profile
- Liver Function Index
- Hepatitis A and B
- AFP Tumour Marker
*Applicable to patients who have not undergone recent testing.”