The Next Chapter

What's the perfect hangover cure? Shaughnessy Bishop-Stall went on a quest to find out

The journalist looks at intoxication and the historical remedies taken over the years to beat the hangover blues in his latest book.
Hungover is a nonfiction book by Shaughnessy Bishop-Stall. (Sinisa Jolic/CBC)

In Hungover, journalist Shaughnessy Bishop-Stall takes a look at intoxication and some of the purported cures available to combat the dreaded hangover.

The book takes a historical and researched look at hangover cures —  from polar bear swims, to saline IV drips, to the age-old hair of the dog — to figure out what works and what doesn't.

Bishop-Stall discussed his quest to find the perfect hangover cure on The Next Chapter

A tipsy approach

"How I researched this book was pretty haphazard. For the most part, I imbibed a little too much and then saw what happened. But over the course of eight years, I ended up going down countless boozy rabbit holes and talking to all sorts of doctors, druids, pharmacists, barkeeps, mixologists and every kind of expert I could find. I also did tons of literally on the ground research — sometimes lying on the ground — and went all over the world imbibing a little too much with a lot of people."

Search for the cure

"As far as the cure itself, what I found is a concoction of a number of things that can all be found in your local vitamin supplements store. It's a combination of some vitamins — including a kind of magical ingredient called acetylcysteine. But the important part is the dose you take and when you take it. The best time is between drinking and falling asleep. Because once you fall asleep your body starts the very complex mechanism that becomes a hangover. And once it starts it's almost impossible to stop." 

Shaughnessy Bishop-Stall's comments have been edited and condensed. 


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