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The “hangover halo” could be the real reason you feel so hopelessly tired


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Photo: Getty Images/Westend61

Sure, going out for some drinks with your friends is fun in the moment, but when that head-splitting reminder of it hits the next morning, you promptly promise yourself that you’ll never swap your kombucha for cosmos ever again. But according to new research though, the effects of a hangover actually linger longer than you probably realize—and those symptoms manifest in ways beyond the typical nausea and headaches. In fact, the scientific results help explain why you also feel so ridiculously exhausted the day after a night out.

In a review that examined 19 different studies published in the journal Addiction, researchers found the impairments in cognition seen when someone is drunk—like poorer attention, memory, coordination, and speed—are still in full effect the day after drinking, even when there’s little to no alcohol left in your bloodstream. And that “hangover halo” is especially bad news for your boss-babe goals. “Our findings demonstrate hangovers can have serious consequences for the performance of everyday activities, such as driving and workplace skills,”study author Sally Adams, PhD, says in a press release.

“Our findings demonstrate hangovers can have serious consequences for the performance of everyday activities, such as driving and workplace skills.” —Sally Adams, PhD

So if you feel drained and without energy to even do the simplest of tasks the day after drinking, you’re not crazy: the “hangover halo” is a real, science-backed thing. Luckily, it’s simple to avoid the problem and ensure your head is on straight after happy hour: just avoid heavy drinking and stick to light, healthier cocktails instead. That way, you can have your fun and ensure the next 24 hours and beyond aren’t the absolute worst.

Here’s how drinking alcohol can alter your oral microbiome and lead to cancer. Or find out how drinking could be worsening your PMS symptoms.

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