New Anti-Headache Pill Claims To Break Alcohol Fast, But Does It Work?

A new anti-hangover supplement has been launched for sale in the UK. It is marketed by the Swedish company Myrkl as an “effective pre-drinking pill”.

The pill is said to disintegrate up to 70 percent alcohol after 60 minutes. This means that if someone drinks 50ml of 40 percent spirits, which contains 20ml of pure alcohol, less than 6ml of alcohol enters the bloodstream. This is the same person who drinks only 15 ml of spirits.

This decrease in the amount of alcohol absorbed by the body is reversed by reducing the short-term effects of alcohol, such as euphoria and reduced anxiety.

The company that makes this supplement recommends taking two tablets one to 12 hours before drinking alcohol.

A probiotic supplement contains two types of gut-friendly bacteria – Bacillus subtilis And the bacilli clot Produced from fermented rice bran. These bacteria naturally break down alcohol into water and carbon dioxide.

The acid-resistant capsule protects the bacteria from natural stomach acids so they can reach the intestines where most of the alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream.

What does science say?

The pill is aimed at those who don’t want a hangover after drinking the day before. But can these pills really prevent a hangover?

The hangover is mainly due to the dehydrating effects of alcohol, which can cause headaches. The direct effect of alcohol on the stomach can also cause stomach pain and nausea.

If less alcohol is ingested in the body, the risk of dehydration is lower. But since the pills only work after the alcohol passes through the stomach into the intestines, they won’t stop the alcohol’s effect on the stomach.

The evidence for Myrkl is based on one published research study. Twenty-four healthy white adults were asked to take two Myrkl tablets or a dummy (a dummy) pill daily for seven days.

They were then given a small amount of alcohol (between 50 and 90 ml of spirits) based on their weight. The blood alcohol level was tested for the next two hours.

The researchers found that within the first 60 minutes, the amount of alcohol in the blood was 70 percent lower in those who took Merkel’s compared to the dummy pill.

Although this study was well designed, including randomly assigning people to either the Myrkl or placebo groups, several issues make the results weaker. First, the researchers only reported results for 14 out of 24 people because ten had lower blood alcohol levels initially.

Second, the results differed between different people, which reduces the accuracy of the study. And third, the researchers tested seven days of treatment before taking a single drink of alcohol, but the company recommended just two pills 1 to 12 hours before drinking any amount.

The study also leaves many questions unanswered. Does the Pill Work in People Who Are Not Young, Healthy, and White? Does it work in people with bowel or liver disease? Are there differences in the effect of contraceptive pills between men and women? What happens when you eat food and alcohol together? Do medications change the action of pills?

It is already known that friendly gut bacteria are altered by long-term disease and lifestyle (smoking, regular alcohol consumption, diet). It is also known that alcohol absorption varies with weight, gender, physical activity, and food consumption.

These factors may reduce or increase the effect of the beneficial bacteria in Merkel’s beans.

Probiotics are safe and widely available. They can be purchased in the form of yogurt, drinks, or pills from many supermarkets and health food stores. The bacteria in Myrkl pills are also likely safe for most people.

However, probiotics given to people with illnesses can upset the natural balance of healthy gut bacteria that causes infection or gut symptoms.

A pill before drinking to prevent a hangover the next day will be helpful for some people. However, with all the unanswered questions about Myrkl, the best treatment for an alcohol hangover is to drink less alcohol the day before.

Ashwin Danda, Associate Professor Emeritus, Hepatology, University of Plymouth.

This article has been republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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