So, the experts agree that a hair of the dog only postpones the evil moment when you have to let your body recover on its own from too much festive alcohol.
And your body works slowly. Even your super-efficient liver takes 48 hours to rid your body of the last remnants of your blow-out.
Plus it needs a time out before you can attack the booze again.
Your hangover – which typically takes the form of a headache, thirst, fatigue, dizziness, nausea and general grumpiness – reaches its peak when your blood-alcohol sinks back to zero.
In the liver, alcohol is broken down into the toxic chemical acetaldehyde. If the amount of alcohol you consume outpaces the ability of your liver to process it, acetaldehyde builds up in your body, leading to headaches, nausea and vomiting.
So what can you do in the meantime to relieve your pain?
Dr Emeka Okorocha has a few ideas which I like because there’s a bit of sound science behind them. You might try a bloody Mary – but a virgin one – with 1/2 glass of tomato juice, 2 tbsp lemon juice, a dash of Worcestershire sauce, a dash of hot pepper sauce and a celery stick.
It could work because tomatoes contain fructose, a sugar that can help your body metabolise alcohol faster to get it out of your system, plus vitamins and minerals which fight inflammation and rehydrate your body and brain.
Then there’s ginger tea made with 12 large ginger slices, 4 cups of boiling water, a dash of lemon, 1/2 cup of honey, and fresh orange juice which could soothe your upset stomach.
Studies also show it may help ease your throbbing head by blocking the formation of inflammatory compounds such as prostaglandins. If you sweeten it with honey the fructose can help get rid of lingering alcohol.
Another remedy is a sandwich of mashed banana and honey between two slices of wholemeal bread.
Bananas are good because you’re short of potassium. Alcohol increases potassium excretion and causes dehydration.
Bananas provide a shot of this potassium and the honey will give you that spike of sugar in your bloodstream to kick-start your day.
If you’re a forward planner, drink half a pint of water before you hit the booze. Then before bed drink another half pint and take a 75mg aspirin.
Water before you go to sleep will give you a head start on hydrating the next morning.
The aspirin mobilises your liver to detox that alcohol load.
Better, between every tipple you have drink a glass of water. But most important of all, take it easy…