I have never been a big drinker. A glass and a half is all I can handle, but my friend can drink like a fish. Basically we each have our own limits. I’m not here to discuss how much drinking is good or bad. Obviously drinking to excess is not good for your health or well-being. Sadly, we don’t often listen to good advice. The point is that the effect of alcohol resonates the next day mostly as fatigue, no matter what your limit is, or how much you drink, Fatigue is a common health complaint to General Practitioners each year. It has been reported that fatigue, or tiredness contributes to a $63 billion loss to the Australian economy in sick days.
We know that alcohol interrupts your sleep. We also know that 90 % of the Australian workforce has been estimated to consume alcohol (VicHealth, 2012). Could it be that modern day fatigue may be a consequence of even low-risk drinking behaviour? Research shows that people who drink alcohol don’t sleep well. Couple this with an adult generation that are too time poor to eat well and follow a healthy diet, and we can see a few red flags that provide an explanation for the fatigue epidemic within our modern society.
We all know the consequences of drinking too much on a big night out. Waking up with a nasty hangover the morning after, does not make a great start to the weekend. You don’t have to drink to excess, however, to feel off your A game the next day. Even drinking a little can result in mild or ‘silent’ hangover symptoms like feeling tired, sluggish and unmotivated.
How often do you say I need a holiday or I’m tired? How often do you have to resort to caffeine and energy drinks to keep you going?
No matter how much you drink, you can’t avoid the effect of alcohol the next day.
Research has shown that 3 out 4 of moderate drinkers experience hangover.
NCETA reports hangovers to be responsible for 11.5 million sick days annually, at a cost of $3 billion to the Australian economy. In the UK 17 million working days are lost each year because of alcohol-related sickness. In the United States, alcohol related absenteeism and poor job performance cost the economy $148 billion annually.
When we look a little deeper it becomes more apparent that there is a pattern in the work place in relation to absenteeism and accident rates. Reduced productivity and increased workplace accident rates have been consistently observed on Mondays, perhaps as a consequence of overindulging on the weekends. In support of this theory, 40% of all sick days are taken on Mondays, suggesting that workers often need a day to get over their weekends, and possibly a few too many drinks.
So what is the solution? Increasing the tax on alcohol? Prohibition?
Unless you can come up with a way to stop everyone drinking, 76% of the population are going to enjoy a drink or two. Approximately 6% of people will binge drink, 10-15% will fail to show up to work after a public holiday or an event, and 40% of sick days will be taken on Mondays.
We made Recoverthol
Recoverthol was made with the aim of reducing the side effects of alcohol on the body and improving lifestyle. The product promotes smart and safe drinking.
There are a few products on the market which claim to treat hangovers. The typically contain magic formulas containing exotic herbs from far off places. The effectiveness of these herbs has not been scientifically proven. At best, you would need very large quantities to show any effect, and the small amounts that are put in capsules really wouldn’t do much. This evident lack of scientifically based formulations is perplexing, given that we have the science to develop products that have a clear mechanism of action. Known mechanisms of alcohol metabolism motivated us to develop Recoverthol, which is a formulation that supports the liver in breaking down alcohol.
Based on the science of alcohol metabolism, Recoverthol was designed and formulated to assist the liver to maintain the metabolism of alcohol, even after a few drinks, when it is required to work to capacity. Recoverthol does not contain any magic formulas or herbs – only active ingredients and biochemical principles known to support alcohol metabolism.
Tablets and capsules are not the answer. We wanted to design and manufacture a product that was easy for people to use. If you tell people to take fluoride for strong teeth, they prefer to obtain a dose from their toothpaste as opposed to taking fluoride tablets. Research has shown that removing barriers will increase medication compliance. Providing an alternative to hard and bulky pills removes a barrier for many people that simply don’t like swallowing tablets. Having a product that you can easily use while you are drinking, that you can simply add to a drink of choice, offered a promising solution. Off course the trick was to make sure it wouldn’t alter the taste of the drink. Who would want that?
After almost 9 years of research and development, we have finally made it. A snap open vial that delivers a small volume liquid formulation that you drop into your drink, with out affecting the taste. Oh, and it works too. By helping the liver to metabolise alcohol more effectively, Recoverthol may assists in management of hangover symptoms.
Now, if I can be so daring as to use condoms as an analogy- when they first came on the market, they suffered a lot of criticism. Today, however, we know that condoms have been in instrumental in providing a means of birth control, but also in preventing the spread of may transmissible diseases. One of the biggest problems we faced whilst developing Recoverthol, was that some were worried that this product would encourage binge drinking. Obviously no one wants that.
We researched binge drinking extensively. We discovered that approximately 6% of any population binge drinks, and that this figure has not changed much over the years, despite the fact that hangover products come and go. We have also aimed to carefully position Recoverthol as a product that promotes smart and safe drinking. Recoverthol can be conceptualised as an insurance policy against hangovers. Similar to car insurance, you take out a policy to cover you in the event of an accident. Recoverthol will cover you for tomorrow, in the vent of you having a few too many drinks tonight. If you chose to buy insurance, you will typically be more careful and not drink to excess. We have also made an App to track the number of drinks you are consuming and to monitor how long that amount of alcohol will take to be broken down in your body. We believe personal education on the effects of alcohol will promote safe drinking and thereby reduce the side effects of alcohol the next day. This will have evident flow on effects for workplace productivity and the economy overall.