Oops, you did it again. You drank a little (okay, a lot) too much last night, and now your body is plotting its sweet revenge on you. And you have brunch plans with your friends in an hour.
You drag yourself out of bed and head to the kitchen. You know how to help yourself, you’ve been curing your hangovers for years. You think you’re a total pro.
You take a mug out of the dirty sink and start washing it. You grab some coffee beans from the pantry. You go to turn the coffee machine on…but WAIT.
Do you know what that caffeine is actually going to do to you? While coffee has been traditionally seen as a hangover cure, a deeper look into the effects coffee can have on your already abused body suggests that it’s probably the worst thing to drink when you’re hungover.
While some studies claim that caffeine eases hangovers, two of the main symptoms of a hangover are nausea and shakiness, which are also two of the main side effects of excessive caffeine. Drinking coffee when you’re hungover might make you feel more awake, but will also worsen your stomach problems and make your hands shakier than a vertical video of a Walmart fight.
But what about the raging headache you have, which has always been tamed by your trusty cup of joe? The thing is, while your headache might be caused by that fourth tequila shot last night, if you are a regular coffee drinker you might actually be experiencing caffeine withdrawal.
The most common symptom of caffeine withdrawal is a headache which usually starts behind the eyes and moves to the front of the head, often confused with a hangover headache, which is usually more of a throbbing headache that worsens with intense light or sound.
So here’s what you should actually be doing to cure that hangover. Go grab a glass of orange juice, which contains high levels of Vitamin B6, proven to reduce symptoms (but not cure, we wish) of a hangover.
If you still feel like death and you think you’re going through caffeine withdrawal, take a few sips of coffee (just a few!), wait half an hour and see if your headache goes away. If it does, you should think about reducing your coffee intake, or switching to decaf. And maybe take it easy on the drinks next time.