The best way to avoid that head-pounding hangover? Drink responsibly! But if that wasn’t in the cards, here’s how you can get over it faster.
BY: TORI SCHMITT, MS, RDN, LD
Everyone likes a party, but there’s probably not a single person who loves the low-energy, belly-rumbling, head-hurting residue.
So what can you do to avoid the awful side effects of drinking too much?
Of course, the best way to avoid a hangover is to sip smartly to begin with. That means you may want to consider sipping slowly to reduce the overall amount of alcohol you consume. At the same time, aim to drink one glass of water in between your spiked beverages to stay optimally hydrated and drink an extra glass before bed. Alcohol has a dehydrating effect, so water is especially needed!
But if it’s too late and you’re reading this after you’ve already partied too hard, here’s what you can do today to get back on track.
1. Give your body a little assistance.
Detoxification begins in the liver through a multi-step process to convert toxins into water-soluble molecules for excretion. What can help that process? Vitamins and minerals, of course, so make sure you get your fruits and vegetables. In fact, some vegetables contain unique compounds to enable detoxification. Broccoli, for example, contains glucoraphanin that can help support lasting detoxification for up to 72 hours.
2. Hydrate – but hydrate better.
You can drink a lot of water, but if you don’t get the water into your cells, you’re not doing all you can to rehydrate. That happens with a little help from electrolytes (primarily potassium). But that doesn’t give you the green light for artificially-colored electrolyte replacers – rather, choose foods naturally high in potassium like avocados, bananas, or dark leafy greens like spinach to help hydrate and reduce bloating.
3. Restore your gut health.
A night of drinking may have you with a C (constipation) or with a D (diarrhea). Better gut health means working hard to get those As (nutrient-dense foods, like lemon with hot water or leafy green vegetables) and Bs (balancing bugs, i.e. probiotics from foods like yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir, and tempeh).
4. Don’t do what your friend told you to do.
Is your friend tempting you to a Bloody Mary in the morning? Having the extra alcohol won’t help the hangover – it will just delay it (and perhaps make it worse). Sip on some water instead!
5. Get some sleep.
After a night of drinking, your body is busy working, trying to get you back to health and your quality of sleep is typically not as deep. If you have the time, hit the snooze button and catch some extra Z’s to help avoid an achy body and cluttered mind.
Lastly, the next time you go out, please drink moderately!
The standard recommendation is no more than one drink per day for women and two drinks for men. And keep in mind that one “drink” is defined as 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of liquor, so keep the overall portion size of your adult beverage in mind. Life is probably more fun enjoying brunch with friends, instead of feeling sick in bed, the next morning.
Let’s cheers to that!
Adapted from the original article.
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Tori Schmitt, MS, RDN, LD is a Ohio-based Registered Dietitian Nutritionist whose goal is to help others find positivity in their life and health. By sifting through the science and diet noise, she helps individuals enjoy the foods they love through a simple, balanced, and realistic approach. Learn more about Tori at YES! Nutrition.