Is yogurt good for hangovers? It’s a surprisingly common question with a not so simple answer.
You may have heard that yogurt (or yogurt drinks) can settle hangover heartburn, replace “good bacteria” in the gut, or even, cure hangovers.
But, is yogurt really that good for a hangover?
In this article, we’re also going to examine yogurt and look at what it contains in terms of nutrients.
We’ll then give a more detailed answer as to whether yogurt is good for hangovers or not.
Causes of a hangover
Before we get into whether yogurt is good for hangovers, we first need to go over how alcohol causes hangovers. In addition, we also need to go over how alcohol affects the gut seeing as yogurt is commonly used to settle upset stomachs.
Hangovers are caused by drinking too much alcohol. And, alcohol causes damage by the following mechanisms:
Dehydration: Alcohol is a diuretic which means it makes your kidneys flush out water causing dehydration.
Inflammation: When alcohol is metabolized in the body, toxic by-products are formed such as acetaldehyde which builds up and reacts with your cells causing inflammation.
Sleep disturbance: Alcohol blocks your brain from reaching the REM stage of sleep which is essential for feeling fully rested.
Hormonal disruption: Heavy drinking can alter the release of stress hormones like cortisol as well as change your body’s response to insulin which can, in some cases, cause low blood sugars.
As a result, you end up with a combination of hangover symptoms which you are probably more than familiar with.
In some cases, overindulgence in food and drink can cause indigestion and stomach aches and there are a few different causes of this as well. For example, increased stomach acid production and reduced “gut motility” to name a couple. You can read more about this in our article about hangover heartburn.
So, with the science out the way, let’s take a closer look at the nutrients in yogurt to see if it can have any benefits for a hangover.
Nutrients in yogurt
Yogurt is one of the most popular fermented dairy products in the world, made by adding live bacteria to milk.
Yogurt is hailed as a healthy food because it contains beneficial bacteria and may function as a probiotic.
The bacteria in yogurt are thought to support digestive health and help with upset stomachs associated with antibiotic use.
In addition, yogurt contains decent amounts of vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B2, B12, and calcium.
So, can the bacteria in yogurt and nutrients really be good for hangovers? That’s what we’ll focus on next.
Is yogurt good for a hangover?
We mentioned earlier that hangovers are caused by dehydration, sleep disturbance, inflammation, and hormonal fluctuations. In simple terms, it’s not a simple process and clearly, yogurt is not going to counteract or treat any of these.
So instead we’ll focus on some of the symptoms that yogurt is thought to help with hangovers.
Yogurt for hangover indigestion/heartburn
For some, swallowing down some refreshing yogurt provides instant relief from heartburn. With that said, these effects are short-lived and yogurt is not a recognized treatment for heartburn.
There are studies that have looked into heartburn caused by an imbalance in gut bacteria. And there is some evidence that yogurt and probiotics may help in this instance. However, this is not relevant to indigestion caused by overindulgence.(1)
Yogurt for hangover poops
stomach aches and loose motions are common after a night of heavy drinking. You’ll know all about the formidable “alcopoops” if you’ve been unfortunate enough to experience them.
Earlier on, we mentioned that some studies have shown probiotics in yogurt can sometimes help with antibiotic-induced diarrhea. But this doesn’t mean it’ll help with diarrhea when hungover as the underlying cause is unrelated.
Alcohol may disrupt the normal balance of your gut bacteria but is likely to be transient and not like the disruption caused by certain antibiotics.
Yogurt for hangover nausea
Yogurt can be a soothing food to consume if you’re feeling nauseous after drinking. But once again, it’s not a known treatment for nausea and any benefit is likely to be short-lived.
In summary: eating (or drinking) yogurt for a hangover may provide some temporary relief from a few gastrointestinal-related hangover symptoms.
So, is yogurt good for hangovers? a simple answer to the question is, not really.
Is yogurt a hangover cure?
I think you’ve probably guessed the answer to this. Yogurt is definitely not a “hangover cure”.
In fact, a real hangover cure doesn’t exist.
can you eat yogurt after drinking alcohol?
You may not be interested in yogurt for hangovers much. But instead wondering if it’s OK to have yogurt after you’ve had a few drinks.
Well, you’ll happy to know that it’s fine to eat yogurt after alcohol. They don’t react with each other and it’s unlikely you’ll have any problems.
With that said, everyone is different and yogurt may not sit well with you after drinking. So if you’re unsure, it’s best to try with a small spoonful first and see how that goes before having a whole bowl!
Anything else to consider
Hangovers are a sign from your body that you’ve been drinking too much alcohol for your body to handle. Trying to “cure” or remedy your hangover with yogurt is the wrong approach.
The best way to cure a hangover is to prevent it from happening in the first place. That means, drinking less, at a slower pace, eating before going out, and drinking plenty of water.
Yogurt for hangovers – Final verdict
That brings us to the end of our look into whether yogurt is good for hangovers.
It all depends on how you look at the issue and what your goals are. If you’re expecting to eat yogurt to cure, prevent, or remedy a hangover in any way, you’ll be massively disappointed.
However, if you’re looking for something easy to eat when hungover that’s also nutritious, yogurt is a good choice!