Judges said an illness should be defined in the interest of protecting people’s health. Picture: Pexels

London - A thumping head and stomach-churning nausea after a night of heavy drinking might leave you feeling as if you’re at death’s door.

And now, hangovers – and their unpleasant symptoms – have been deemed a legitimate illness by a German court.

An unnamed distributor of an "anti-hangover" drink was taken to court over claims it made about its products. The court in Frankfurt ruled that marketing by the firm violated a ban on attributing to food products the ability to prevent, treat or heal illnesses.

Judges said an illness should be defined in the interest of protecting people’s health.

They added that the term encompasses "any, even a slight or temporary, disruption of the body’s normal condition or normal activity" and said it includes headaches and other symptoms that result from consuming alcohol – "a harmful substance".

The judgment came just days after the 186th Oktoberfest beer festival started in Munich on Saturday, where about 7.5 million litres of beer are drunk by 6 million beer lovers.

And earlier this year, a German-led study found there were no known "effective medical remedies" for a hangover.

Published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, it also debunked the adage "beer before wine and you’ll feel fine". Lead author Joran Kochling, of Witten/Herdecke University, said they found no truth to the saying.

Daily Mail