How Much Alcohol Causes a Hangover, and the Best Drinks to Avoid One

The misery of a hangover usually makes us regret every drink from the day before. You don’t have to forgo drinking altogether, though, if you don’t want to. Just know how many drinks tend to cause a hangover and which alcoholic drinks are less likely to give you those awful symptoms. Here’s what 33 years of alcohol hangover research tells us.

Citing a review from the American College of Physicians, The California Report sums up how many drinks is too much:

  • For men, a dose of “five to seven standard cocktails” consumed over a four-to-six-hour period, is “almost always followed by hangover symptoms.”P
  • For women, the dose is three to five drinks. Women feel the effects of alcohol on a smaller dose not because they are smaller (in general) than men, but because they metabolize alcohol differently.

We might have different alcohol tolerance levels, but these are general guidelines for keeping a hangover away.