Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Fun fact: Scientific basis of a hangover cure revealed

Space-filling model of the ethanol molecule
Speaking at the 245th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, Allyson E. Mitchell, PhD revealed that touted hangover remedy Yak-A-Mein Soup (or 'Old Sober') contains ingredients that have been shown scientifically to combat the effects of a hangover.

The soup has many variations but is based on a salty beef and soy broth and contains sliced hard boiled egg both of which have been shown to ease hangovers.

Space-filling model the acetaldehyde molecule

The broth can help replace the salts like sodium and potassium that are lost due to the diuretic effect of alcohol. Furthermore, eggs contain cysteine, which helps remove acetaldehyde from the body. Acetaldehyde, which has toxic effects, is produced when the body breaks down alcohol.

'Old Sober' has been a popular remedy in New Orleans since the 1950's  for those that have enjoyed the nightlife on Bourbon Street a bit too excessively.

Of course the only way to truly avoid a hangover is to not consume alcohol in the first place.