Urine methanol concentration and alcohol hangover severity.Alcohol 2017; 59:37-41A
Congeners are substances, other than ethanol, that are produced during fermentation. Previous research found that the consumption of congener-rich drinks contributes to the severity of alcohol hangover. Methanol is such a congener that has been related to alcohol hangover. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the relationship between urine methanol concentration and alcohol hangover severity.
N = 36 healthy social drinkers (22 females, 14 males), aged 18-30 years old, participated in a naturalistic study, comprising a hangover day and a control day (no alcohol consumed the previous day). N = 18 of them had regular hangovers (the hangover group), while the other N = 18 claimed to be hangover-immune (hangover-immune group). Overall hangover severity was assessed, and that of 23 individual hangover symptoms. Urine methanol concentrations on the hangover and control days were compared, and correlated to hangover (symptom) severity.
Urine methanol concentration was significantly higher on hangover days compared to control days (p = 0.0001). No significant differences in urine methanol concentration were found between the hangover group and hangover-immune group. However, urine methanol concentration did not significantly correlate with overall hangover severity (r = -0.011, p = 0.948), nor with any of the individual hangover symptoms. These findings were observed also when analyzing the data separately for the hangover-immune group. In the hangover group, a significant correlation with urine methanol concentration was found only with vomiting (r = 0.489, p = 0.037).
No significant correlation was observed between urine methanol concentration and hangover severity, nor with individual core hangover symptoms.