Berocca and greasy fry-ups just not working the magic they used to? According to a US alcohol expert, our hangovers intensify as we as we get older because our body gradually loses the capability to process booze.
Dr Jim Schaefer, an alcohol metabolism expert and an anthropology professor at Union College in New York, told MSNBC: "The critical enzymes for breaking down booze are somewhat diminished in efficiency as we age."
The enzymes your body uses to break down last night's tequila shots are alcohol dehydrogenase (ALDH) and aldehyde dehydrogenase (ADH). ALDH breaks down the ethanol from alcohol into acetaldehyde, which is then broken down by ADH into a non-toxic substance called acetic acid.
"It has been suggested that acetaldehyde is one of the key toxic chemicals that influences the severity of a hangover," Dr Schaefer said. "So any deterioration in ADH levels would contribute to worse hangovers."
So how do we counteract our body's diminished ability to deal with a weekend bender? Choose our alcohol carefully.
Cheap beer, wine and other liquors tend to intensify hangovers because they're more likely to have a higher congener content. Congeners are the "chemical soup" that results from the fermentation or distillation process, Dr Schaefer said.
"The more expensive liquors are often filtered and triple or more distilled thus, cleaner alcohol, less junk," he said.
"As we age, we may be unable to avoid chemical changes that could be wrecking the efficiency of our liver, and we should avoid lousy intoxicants, as they are guaranteed to cause digestive or metabolic discomfort."
Related: The ultimate hangover cure