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U.S. Finally Gets Its Clammy Hands on Hangover “Cure” Berocca With Bonkers Joel McHale Commercial



The U.S. is finally catching up with the rest of the world! Everyone rejoice! What? No, I don’t mean in education or healthcare—this is far more important. I’m talking about hangover cures. Yes, we’re finally getting a full-scale launch of the rest of the world’s favorite* hangover cure*: Berocca. *Actual favorite-ness and cure-ness not guaranteed.

Berocca was quietly made available to U.S. customers in 2012 by order through a website, but Bayer has purchased the drug for distribution within the U.S., and they’re making a serious marketing push. Well, maybe serious isn’t the right word, because the commercials are a fittingly goofy take on motivational speakers starring none other than Joel McHale:

Why fittingly goofy? Because Berocca is basically the Airborne of self-inflicted sickness. lists its ingredients as:

  • B vitamins: B vitamins support physical energy by helping to convert food to energy*
  • Guarana and caffeine: natural guarana extract and caffeine support mental sharpness*
  • Vitamin C: an antioxidant that helps support immune health*
  • Zinc: an antioxidant that helps support immune health*
  • Plus, Berocca a good source of magnesium

But wait! What’s with all the asterisks? Oh, just this:

*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Basically, Berocca is just fancy, targeted marketing for some vitamins. It’s certainly not bad for you and may have some positive effect on how you feel, but the idea that it’s anything more than a multivitamin with a bit of caffeine is something even Bayer won’t commit to. Your biggest benefit may actually come through hydration from the water you drink when taking it, because a big part of being hungover is dehydration.

This is how Bayer responds to Berocca as a hangover cure according to

Whilst there have been no studies conducted on the effect of Berocca on hangovers, alcohol can affect the absorption and use of the B group vitamins. Apart from the other essential vitamins and minerals, Berocca is a high-dose vitamin B supplement which may help restore depleted levels of B-vitamins. Drinking a lot of water or other rehydrating drinks will help towards preventing or lessening most hangover symptoms. Having a Berocca effervescent tablet in water may also help you rehydrate.

Of course, they can’t say explicitly that it cures hangovers, but they know that word of mouth will associate it with hangovers without their help (it already appears on hangover remedy lists), so we have those conversations to look forward to with friends and family. At least we got motivational speaker Joel McHale out of it. FWA-PAH!


(via Jezebel, image via I Woke Up Today)

Previously in the science of feeling crappy

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Dan Van Winkle (he) is an editor and manager who has been working in digital media since 2013, first at now-defunct Geekosystem (RIP), and then at The Mary Sue starting in 2014, specializing in gaming, science, and technology. Outside of his professional experience, he has been active in video game modding and development as a hobby for many years. He lives in North Carolina with Lisa Brown (his wife) and Liz Lemon (their dog), both of whom are the best, and you will regret challenging him at Smash Bros.