We all do things that are supposed to be good for you at some later date, like an emotional and physical Karma. I don’t ever consume High Fructose Corn Syrup. I haven’t eaten any ( except for the occasional energy drink for this site) for a looong time. Who knows if it makes me any healthier – I feel absolutely no different having removed it from my diet. But I feel like I am gaining a little health Karma, like a +1 on some imaginary RPG stat card. I go to the gym every day and break myself on the cardio machines, down protein shakes and take a daily Multi. Does doing all this make me a svelte Dolce & Gabbana undies model? Hardly. Mind you, I am not 300lbs of couch-fed flab, but it is hard to keep on a routine if you don’t get any short term results.
I think I have made the mistake of adding super-unleaded in my minivan once, and when I did not go 200 miles an hour and get 700 brake horsepower, never again did I spend the extra 50 cents for good car karma. Much is the same with Multi-vitamins. A trip to the local health food store turns into hundreds of pills for Vitamin A B C D E K P, Minerals, Antioxidants, Ginko, Olive or Fish Oil, Carrot Powder, CoQ and Amino acids, Ginger, Ginseng and Garlic powder – a bizarre witches brew of gel caps all with the purpose of giving you that long-term health karma – but even if you down every herb in an herbalists trove, you aren’t going to turn into Michael Phelps or Stephen Hawking.
Drinkwel is packed full of those vitamins and minerals – and is supposed to do help recover from a long night of drinking, as well as help your body long term counter the effects of too much Joose and Four Loko. With all the imbibing I have been doing lately, testing out all these caffeinated alcoholic substances before they were pulled from the market, I was very glad when Drinkwel came to me in the mail. Even without the caffeine, I thought this was worthy of writing about.
Drinkwel comes in a big bottle, like you would find multivitamins in. I was surprised and happy that the package was generic enough that you would not feel embarrassed having this in your cupboard. For a product that involves people who are regularly drinking too much, they could have really gotten obnoxious with the packaging. But no, this was class – all the way. Even their logo, a box shape made out of futuristic Ds was understated and quite nice. Even their smaller 3 cap blister pack looked really nice – and something I could definitely pick up at my local convenience store or even drug store.
They also laid out their instructions very clearly – so you don’t get confused in your inebriated state. Mine even came with a handy card with drawings in case my eyesight was too blurred to read.
The instructions make sense: you can either take this every day for that long term health karma, but also you dig for 3 more before you imbibe and 3 when you are ready to go to bed. They also say take with water – which would help with the whole hangover anyways.
In terms of nutrition, these vegetarian pills definitely have it going on. Vitamin C and B complex, calcuim and a trace mineral blend. There is an amino acid blend in here, which includes Taurine, theanine and something I have not seen before called N-Acetyl cysteine. For your herbal pleasure, they put in some milk thistle, Kudzu flower, artichoke leaf, rhodiola rosea, green tea, some antioxidant friuts like acai and goji and some betaine.
So other than the green tea, there is not much that could add any hidden caffeine, which can be good if I am supposed to take 3 a day, plus 6 on nights I am drinking.
I am not so impressed by their antioxidant blend, as unless you take an extreme amount of them super-fruits do nothing for you but taste good. However, the green tea, Betaine, trace mineral blend and vitamins will earn tons of good body karma points. They are supposed to aid in digestion, liver health and help to lots of organs that get destroyed by drink.
Of course the big question is if it works – and I found the answer to be a resounding Sometimes. I took some in the mornings right after breakfast. I don’t know if my liver felt better – or any other part of me. I kept taking them for about two weeks, trying to earn those points – ready to start feeling like I could climb mountains or run half-marathons. After the end of those two weeks, I felt exactly the same as I did before. Sure, the pacebo effect told me I was breathing more deeply and I might have noticed a change in overall fatigue, I still felt the urge to crash every day at about 5, and had the same energy levels as I always have. While this might have a lot of nutrients in it, I am not sure if you would notice a big lack of Copper in your diet any more than you would notice a lack of HFCS.
Now I am not a heavy drinker,so I could not tell if this drink works better on alcoholics with long term damage. I also rarely get hangovers, except when I have a few select drinks. So for science, my wife and I decided to get sloshed on the drinks that usually do us in (Tequila and wine for her, Kamikazes for me) We followed the directions very clearly, ending up with 6 pills in us, along with an 8-10 ounce glass of water. I was curious how drinkwel would prevent me from feeling ugly in the morning. Drinkwel is not going to help with dehydration, as it is just a pill. When brain cells are dehydrated, they shrink while stretching your nerve endings, which causes those pounding headaches. I thought maybe my liver would maybe soak up all that alcohol, or the B vitamins would flush it cleanly from my body, leaving me perky and bright.
When morning came – life was painful. We both had headaches, cotton mouth and nausea – and needed our college hangover remedy of coffee, V8 and a breakfast burrito in a big way. Drinkwel might have brought the hangover pain from an 8 to a 6, but all I could really tell was it was still painful, queasy and draining in the morning.
So we tried again a bit later in the week -and when I drank this with a full 24 ounces of water before going to bed, I felt no hangover at all. But since I just rehydrated my body, I probably would have been more or less OK in the morning anyways. Drinkwel might be a good idea for long term happiness, but don’t expect this to be a cure all for the fun you had the night before.