It’s almost halfway through January. If you’re still hungover from New Years Eve, please get to your closest hospital, urgent care facility or witch doctor immediately because you may have had a little bit too much fun. Even if you’re not still hurting, hangovers can strike at any time and you don’t have to be friends with Zach Galifianakis to end up with a brutal one. Potentially you will have too much fun at that wedding you’re going to this weekend or maybe you’ll get a little crazy trying out fancy drinks for your upcoming Super Bowl party. For most of is, including old people like me (I’m thirty), hangovers can sneak up out of nowhere.
Clearly, the best way to guarantee that you don’t get a hangover is to not even drink. We all know that just isn’t a possibility, so try to drink a lot of water, eat a protein rich dinner and pace yourself. Also, my dad always says that chugging a big glass of water and taking some Ibuprofen is the best cure and I tend to listen to that guy. Good times are a marathon, not a sprint. Well, maybe not a marathon. How about a 5K? That sounds way less drunky.
A few days ago, I sent out a message to my Facebook friends asking for their cures for the great hangover dilemma and I received some interesting responses. My brother Andy claims that Chia seeds and Kombucha are what I need to get my head straight. For some reason this made our friend Jill claim that he sounded like he was involved in some kind of witch craft. Also, the same amount of people that claimed that greasy food was a cure said that B vitamins were the key.
Here are some of the most interesting responses: Egg Mcmuffin, Vitamin Water Revive, Happy Meal with a Coke, Gingerale and splashing cold water on your face.
I found it kind of strange that out of the dozen or so people that had input in this, not a single one even mentioned coffee. I have long since heard that coffee is one of the best ways to make your head feel better because of the caffeine, but what do I know?
Kendra Strasburg of CRAVE Health, does know what it takes to defend against and cure hangovers. Strasburg, a “hangover coach”, has some healthy tips to get your mind and body back into tip-top shape so you can start off fresh in 2012. She, like me, knows the importance of water in the alcohol consumption process. “Match your cocktails one-to-one with water to help stave off the dehydration that is one of the root causes of your hangover.”
Strasburg adds that you should put a slice of lemon in your water because “lemons have enzymes that replenish the liver and squeeze out toxins like wringing out a sponge.” She also says that a simple kitchen staple can do wonders in the fight against an achy head and upset stomach. “Take a tablespoon of olive oil before going out on the town. The fat actually lines the stomach walls and makes it harder for alcohol to penetrate into the blood stream. No sneak attack drunkenness this way, and naturally it leads to less of a hangover.”
Here are a few more simple tips from Strasburg that you can do while drinking to ensure that you don’t end up feeling like someone is using a jack hammer to do construction work on your frontal lobe:
- Cocktails that contain natural sweeteners will be easier for your body to break down than those that are made with refined sugary syrups.
- Stay away from shots. Unless you’re drinking each one with a full cup of water chaser, you’re just asking for trouble.
If the inevitable happens and you do wake up with a killer hangover, Strasburgh has a few simple, healthy ways to get your head back where it belongs:
- Take a B Vitamin – These are the first vitamins to be used up as your body processes last night’s debauchery – giving some back (either before bed or upon waking) helps restore energy naturally, and helps the re-hydration process along.
- Eggs – Eggs contain cysteine, which helps to mop up the “leftover mess” by breaking down toxic chemical byproducts of alcohol metabolism by the liver.
- Coconut Water – All the rage these days, coconut water is full of replenishing electrolytes, magnesium, & potassium, without added junky ingredients like fructose and red-dye no. 5.
- Ginseng – the herbal equivalent of coffee, this all-natural stimulant will help regulate blood sugar levels.
- Tiger Balm – Rubbing tiger balm on your temples promotes blood flow and work as a painkiller.