Ah, the hangover. That oh-so-not-delightful flipside of all the fun you had at the bar or the party last night...or if you're like some people, just a couple of glasses of wine at home. The aching headache, the parched mouth, the roiled stomach, the all-around miserable sluggishness and malaise: a mean hangover never fails to ruin the morning—if not the whole day—after, and often inspires a (short-lived) vow to never again down a beer or a glass of bubbly. Here at Toast!, we’ve taken square aim at the hangover by drawing upon the latest science to come up with a fun, gummy solution that targets the real causes of that post-drinking punishment. Here’s the basic story behind our Before You Drink gummies, your new best friends out on the town!

The Birth of a Hangover

Most hangover sufferers still attribute the hit-by-a-ton-of-bricks feeling they experience after a night out to dehydration. But the latest research suggests this isn’t a primary cause of hangoversAs Dr. Joris Verster, the leading researcher on hangovers and the founder of the Alcohol Hangover Research Group (and Scientific Adviser at Toast!), puts it “drinking a lot of water may reduce your thirst, but it will not take away a hangover’s misery". Instead, hangovers appear to be quite similar to another common malady: the flu. Think of how you feel when you have a flu. You’re nauseous. Your head and body hurt. You’re tired. It’s a lot like a hangover! And none of those symptoms are caused by the flu virus itself. Instead, you feel that way because your immune system is doing everything it can to fight off the flu virus that is spreading throughout your body. 

Recent research has shown that a hangover functions quite similarly. When you drink alcohol, your body breaks it down in two steps. When both steps are done the alcohol has been turned into a completely harmless compound called acetate. Unfortunately both alcohol and the product of the first step of breaking it down, a nasty compound called acetaldehyde, are toxic to the human body. Both are also easily absorbed into the bloodstream, allowing them to travel throughout your body. This results in inflammation in your liver, stomach, brain, and throughout your body. As Dr. Verster explains, “Acetaldehyde and ethanol are both toxic substances. When they are present in the body, this can elicit an immune response.“

So your body begins to mount a defense to this perceived attack, though the “attack,” of course, is just you enjoying a few adult beverages. And because alcohol and acetaldehyde are traveling throughout your body, just like a flu, your immune system sends defenders to your brain, to your stomach, and throughout your body. The result the next morning? All those pleasant hangover symptoms we all love so much.

Toast! To The Rescue

Unlike products that focus on dehydration or other debunked theories, let alone the poor-performing (and often pretty gross) home hangover remedies like wolfing down raw eggs or pounding pickle juice, Before You Drink gummies are designed to support the body's natural process of metabolizing alcohol. Our delicious blackberry gummies accomplish this two ways.

First, our gummies are designed to support your body in breaking down alcohol into harmless acetate as fast as possible. When your body breaks alcohol down into acetaldehyde, the first step towards turning it into acetate, your body relies on two key nutrients, zinc and niacin. Our gummies contain both, giving your body the extact building blocks it needs to metabolize alcohol. To then turn that acetaldehyde into acetate, your body uses a compound called glutathione. Unfortunately, it’s limited in supply and your body can’t produce it very quickly, so as you continue to drink your body can’t keep pace, and acetaldehyde levels rise. Our gummies are loaded with green tea and milk thistle extracts that help ramp up your glutathione levels. They’re also packed with n-acetylcysteine (NAC), a precursor to glutathione which helps your body to keep producing a steady supply of glutathione to break down acetaldehyde as you enjoy another round or two.

Second, Before You Drink gummies are also packed with powerful anti-inflammatory ingredients. Clinical research has shown that milk thistle extract, green tea extract, prickly pear extract, and NAC all reduce inflammation when drinking, helping protect not just your liver, but also your brain and your heart. In fact, in one clinical study prickly pear was shown to help reduce hangover symptoms by itself thanks to its anti-inflammatory prowess. This two pronged approach helps your body process alcohol as efficiently, and with as little inflammation, as possible, all while supporting your body's longterm health.

And it all comes in a super-fun gummy to boot, about as far from an intimidating glass of “prairie oysters” as you can get. So if you don't want to waste a day to the slow burn, the secret agent, and the other common types of hangover, snack on some gummies at the start of your evening (or, if you forget, before you hit the sack), and boost your body's response to alcohol. And hey–don't forget to share!

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Make the most of your time, and get yourself a carton of Before You Drink gummies today!