A new supplement that claims to stop hangovers has been launched in the UK – and it is selling out. Writer and mum of three Alice McIntyre, 38,
A new supplement that claims to stop hangovers has been launched in the UK – and it is selling out.
Writer and mum of three Alice McIntyre, 38, from Kent, gives it a try.
GETTING a hormonal 11-year-old and hyper seven-year-old Weeta-bixed, into clothes and out the house by 8am, with a headache and the sweats, isn’t worth that extra glass of wine.
Oh, and I’ve got a baby under one to further complicate things.
Drinking is just not worth that crushing feeling of regret and anxiety I always get the morning after the night before, which my friends and I woefully call Pinot paranoia. So generally I avoid having more than a glass.
But this week a £1 pill has been released and is available to buy online in the UK — promising to end the misery of hangovers, if you pop just two of them.
The idea of the Myrkl pill, from Swedish firm De Faire Medical, is that it breaks down alcohol inside the gut — before it hits the rest of the body.
I didn’t feel anxious or on edge, I felt clear-headed and pretty well rested[/caption]
READ MORE ON MYRKL PILL
Where can I buy Myrkl hangover pill and is it available in the UK?
All we know about hangover pill Myrkl and how it works
Took my chances
It’s made of probiotics, with Vitamin B12 and (amino acid) L-Cysteine, which are all safe for consumption. Trials have shown the tablets reduce alcohol concentration in the blood by 70 per cent within an hour.
Scientists say the pills continue to break down alcohol for 12 hours.
It sounds too good to be true.
Like many mums, I love a drink but rarely let my hair down due to fear of a hangover on parenting duty.
So can this pill save my social life? After bagging a box of them — £30 for 30 tablets — before they sold out earlier this week, I took my chances.
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I followed the instructions of taking two pills at least two hours before consuming an alcoholic drink and then sipped at my large glass of rosé.
While I hoped I’d feel guilt-free, I started feeling apprehensive: What if it didn’t work and I’d given myself a banging hangover for nothing?
But the possibility of a hangover- free life was enough to spur me on.
My architect husband Chris, 37, took over all parenting for the night so I could drink enough to properly test the pills — as I’d never put myself in charge of the kids after drinking.
He was convinced I’d regret it and wake feeling dreadful.
Others have doubts, too. GP Dr Rachel Ward says the pills are not sold as a drug but as a food supplement, and warns: “These are not regulated in the same way as drugs and do not need to prove their effectiveness in the same way.
“It is claimed they change the way alcohol is metabolised, which in turn reduces hangovers.
“However, there is no evidence that this product reduces hangovers, that I can find.”
With this advice ringing in my ears, I grabbed my wine, which went down nicely, despite my nerves. I soon started feeling relaxed and moved on to my second glass of wine, 12 per cent ABV, as I munched a slice of margherita pizza.
I would usually start feeling tipsy by the end of my second large glass, but although I could tell I had alcohol in my system I still felt pretty sober.
By the time Love Island started at 9pm, I was on to glass number three. I was definitely reaching my usual personal limit but if anything I was feeling sleepy.
I was uncharacteristically not up for dancing around my living room, or ordering regrettable online purchases — like I had form for after a few drinks.
When I finally got into bed — four large glasses of wine down, the equivalent of 12 units — I didn’t feel drunk. I wasn’t slurring my words, talking incessantly or repeating myself which pals had kindly mentioned I had done on past nights out.
But I did feel slightly woozy, very chilled out and definitely ready to sink beneath the duvet.
I usually sleep terribly after a night of drinking, waking frequently feeling hot and sweaty with an unquenchable thirst. I have to get up and take paracetamol around 3am when the headache kicks in.
So when I woke up at 7am, I couldn’t believe I’d slept through the night.
And the burning question: Did I have a hangover?
I felt like I’d had a drink the night before — fuzzy around my temples and a dull, mild headache. But I waited for the usual nausea to hit me. It didn’t.
And the best thing was that I didn’t feel anxious or on edge. I felt clear-headed and pretty well rested.
I wondered if things would be worse once I got up and started my day. But I managed to get the kids dressed and ready, no problems.
The school run went smoothly — no banging head or nausea.
I went for a coffee with a school mum mate and forgot all about the mild headache. It certainly wasn’t bad enough to affect my day, or have me reach for pain relief.
By lunchtime the headache was slightly worse but I realised I’d not drunk enough water. It was a muggy day, so I may have had a headache anyway.
By mid-afternoon I concluded I’d escaped the worst of a hangover, and was feeling smug.
Only, at around 3pm, my temples throbbed, the top of my neck hurt and I felt a little sick. It felt like my hangover had arrived with a vengeance. It could be a coincidence, or perhaps the tablets just delay the inevitable.
It’s worth noting that Hakan Magnusson, CEO at Myrkl, says these pills are not an excuse to drink beyond NHS guidelines — 14 units a week, spread out over three days — but could be a “game-changing product for those regular moderate drinkers.”
I guess “moderate” is open to interpretation but my 12 units in one sitting was more than the NHS would advise, so maybe that could explain my deterioration in the afternoon.
The Myrkl pills break down alcohol in the system for 12 hours[/caption]
Would I take the pills again? It would depend on why I was drinking.
For a big night out, I’d actually end up drinking more because it might take longer to feel the effects. I’d spend more and may get a hangover anyway.
But I would take the pills if I fancied a few glasses of wine on a week night and wanted to relax without the dread of the next morning, knowing the hangover might come later in the day when it’s not too long until bedtime.
I’ll definitely keep a box in my bathroom cabinet on standby.
You never know when you might fancy a glass of something fizzy, without the morning misery.
Additional reporting: NIKKI WATKINS
Or are these better bets?
DR Rachel Ward gives her verdict on other remedies for a hangover, varying from the traditional to an expensive celeb-favoured option.
IV VITAMIN DRIP – (from £300, secretspa.co.uk, for an at-home treatment):
Many celebrities have claimed that a vitamin drip after a big night is the way forward to cure hangovers.
You can book these online and they are very pricey for an at-home treatment which boasts of giving you, intravenously, micronutrients to get you out of your hangover fug.
Though vitamin supplements are beneficial if you are deficient, the best way to get adequate vitamins is through a healthy, balanced diet.
THE AFTER PARTY PATCH (£15.99, Amazon.co.uk):
Made by UK company Lifebio, this is a patch said to contain nutrients and milk thistle that you apply to skin after drinking and wear for up to ten hours. There is no scientific evidence that it cures hangovers.
FULL-ENGLISH BREAKFAST: Alcohol causes your blood sugar to fall, leading you to feeling hungry the next morning.
Though a full English is not the healthiest start to the day, it does contain protein, salt and carbohydrates which can make you feel better if nauseated after alcohol. It is important to drink plenty of water with this meal, as alcohol causes dehydration.
IBUPROFEN: An effective painkiller for headaches but not an easy cure-all – it can cause irritation in the stomach so make sure you never have it without eating first.
If you have asthma, issues with your kidneys, have had an ulcer or internal bleed or are on certain medications, you might not be able to take it, so always check with your pharmacist.
BANANAS: Rich in potassium, which is lost in body fluids when hungover or drunk, for example by sweating or vomiting.
A good source of natural sugars which will give you energy you are badly lacking.