03/30/2017 11:19 EDT

The Scientific Reasons Why Your Hangover Gets Worse With Age

Ah, the joys of aging!

You might have noticed that your hangovers have only gotten worse as you get older.

In your late 20s, the days of waking up without the slightest tingle in your forehead begin to disappear and all that remains is a mind-shattering headache that can take hours, or even an entire day, to disappear.

For those who have been drinking strong all along, this change may come as a surprise, but researchers say it's just one of many things to be expected with age.

According to Business Insider, your body can't break down alcohol as efficiently as you get older, which leaves a chemical called acetaldehyde that builds up in the body and is responsible for the nausea and headaches you get after a night of heavy drinking.

While your body is built with its own "hangover cure" in the form of aldehyde dehydrogenase, the enzyme can only tackle so much, meaning the more you drink the worse the hangover gets.

And if you've gained some weight as you age (as most of us do) your hangovers might actually be harder to handle. Contrary to the popular belief that more weight means you can handle more alcohol, researchers at West Virginia University say more fat in the body leaves less space for alcohol to diffuse, meaning it stays in your system longer.

Ah, the joys of getting older!

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