Ever since the culturally enlightening and history altering discovery of alcohol, there have been those who have chosen to throw caution to the wind and drink like there’s no tomorrow. Consequently, the universe thought it grand to reward the over indulgent with what is scientifically known as veisalgia - a temporary but intense form of dehydration due to the fact that alcohol essentially messes with your innards until you want to cry. Most commonly, however, this horrible form of natural torture is known as a hangover.
As with most modern diseases, medical science and pseudo science has come up with a myriad of bizarre, repulsive, and often fruitless attempts to quell or prevent this wretched state of being from happening to you! Historically, every culture has laid claim to know the end all be all of hangover remedy, typically there is no consensus beyond that of ingesting more potentially vomit inducing sustenance into your body and hoping for the best.
Legend has it that eating certain foods before, during, and after your friends Jack, Johnny and Jameson get together to have a party, can certainly help with the next day’s inevitable call in to work with the “flu.” Eating food in general increases your body’s metabolism and the speed at which you process alcohol, and with a bit of discerning choice and timing, replenishing those nutrients before they punish your body for not doing so will surely give you a head start on the healing process. So, text yourself these following instructions so that when the time comes you will be prepared, and wont have to rely on your memory.
Pre-game with a glass or two of pure (non-carbonated, non-sugar added) water — make sure you are well hydrated since alcohol is a diuretic. Not only will alcohol strip you of water, it will also deplete essential nutrients from your body, both root causes to a hangover. Make sure to eat foods high in Vitamins B and C, such as fruit and other fiber-filled foods like beans, rice, or grains. Whether all you eat is a banana or a slice of bread, make sure you eat something before you drink to avoid risking low blood sugar. Having food in your stomach will slow the entrance of alcohol into your bloodstream effectively giving you a bit of hangover resistance. Foods containing complex carbs and high protein foods are the best for this; the heavier the better: indulge your inner fat-kid with cheeseburgers, fries, and mozzarella sticks, your outer alcoholic with thank you in the morning.
Through the course of the night, it’s incredibly important to remember that the hangover is caused by dehydration and nutrient depletion. Keeping this in mind, alternate a glass of water every other round to keep hydrated. Stick to alcohol and non-carbonated mixers such as fruit juices; avoid caffeine, such as soda and energy drinks like Red Bull, which further causes dehydration. Though bar snacks like potato chips and pretzels might seem like a good idea, avoid salty foods which only make you thirstier and more likely to guzzle down another few rounds.
Indulge in any cravings you have for greasy foods after last call: pizza or pasta is usually best since cheese and carbohydrates are a good source of amino acids, though fats and protein will also further slow the absorption of any alcohol still kicking around in your system. Drink a sports drink like Gatorade before hitting the sack to replace electrolytes, such as potassium and magnesium, depleted by drinking. Did we mention you should drink water? Chug a bottle of water before calling it a night.
The Next Morning
If you forgot to read your text message, still had rendezvous with the clap laden bar fly and were accounted for at every bar you don’t remember going to on facebook, than im sorry to say that plenty of water will not fix what’s ailing you. However, if you are still feeling a bit queasy after eating before, during, and after binging last night there is still a bit of hope. Replenish your reserves with a mix of carbs, fat, and protein: a bagel and cream cheese or the go-to bacon, egg, and cheese on a biscuit, roll, or English muffin with a glass of orange, juice should do the trick. Juices contain water, which helps rehydrate your body, and the citrus varieties are packed with natural sugars and vitamins to help your body break down any residual alcohol lingering around. Avoid guzzling coffee—if you must have any, limit yourself to one cup only since caffeine will further dehydrate and exacerbate alcohol withdrawal jitters. Now get your nearly hangover-free self over to the nearest gym to sweat everything out.