A little “hair of the dog” may get you to the chapel in time but the drive home will be a struggle. Although this concept may take the edge off initially, more alcohol means more dehydration, and all it really does is help you postpone the inevitable. If you're looking to avoid a hangover altogether, follow this 8-step food plan.
Step 1: On the evening of your revelry, be sure to eat a “nice” greasy meal to line the stomach. The stomach lining is semi-permeable and if unlined will allow alcohol to get into the bloodstream way too quickly. Try these skinny versions of hefty comfort meals... they will do the job just fine! Skinny Pizza and Cheeseburger Pie are a few of our favorites.
Step 2: For every alcoholic beverage you drink, follow it with a glass of water. It will not only slow alcohol absorption and counteract the dehydrating effects of alcohol, but it will also ensure that you aren’t just gulping down your alcoholic beverage because you're getting down and dirty on the dance floor. Make sure the last thing you drink at the end of the night is another glass of water.
Step 3: Immediately upon waking, hydrate with liquids like water — or even better, coconut water. Don’t counteract this by dehydrating yourself further with caffeine. Fore more benefits of coconut water, read here!
Step 4: Eat a banana. You didn’t just lose your cell phone last night; alcohol is a diuretic and depletes the body of electrolytes. The potassium in a banana will replace those lost electrolytes.
Step 5: Go out to breakfast but don’t irritate your stomach with things like citrus drinks. Instead, order a tomato juice (NOT a bloody Mary) and sprinkle some salt in it. Tomatoes contain the antioxidant lycopene and the salt will replace the sodium you lost on your third trip to the bathroom.
Step 6: Order some eggs over easy or soft boiled (they are supposedly the easiest to digest). Eggs have amino acids that help break down acetaldehyde, a poisonous metabolic byproduct of alcohol metabolism. Your body is working hard to get back to “normal". As it breaks down the ethanol (alcohol), acetaldehyde is what gets left over and that is what causes your headache. Skip the side of greasy bacon and order a large side of spinach, which also contains a large amount of potassium (see step 4). Check out these Savory Spinach & Ricotta Crepes!
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Step 7: Order a chicken noodle soup to go, or better yet, make this skinny version at home. There's a reason why chicken noodle soup can cure the common cold. It replaces sodium and will further rehydrate you.
Step 8: Grab a sports drink on the way home. Although sports drinks are generally not recommended for the average active person, this situation is anything from average (to your body). And, let's face it, a sugary sports drink is not the worst thing you've ingested in the last 24 hours!