I have done my fair share of researching two things: How to detox after days of binge eating and drinking, and how to quicken the process of getting over a hangover. Why? Because I binge eat and drink over the holidays and have found myself kneeling in front of the porcelain god on many a January 1st.
Chances are, many of you, like me, may wake up January 1 and think why did I drink so much?
If you find yourself in this predicament, there are certain things to eat and drink, pre and post binge, that may help you not spend the very first day of the year in guilt and agony.
Now the most obvious advice, which takes no research whatsoever, is simply to not drink superfluously. Durr. Okay. Sure. I don’t know about you but, I plan on learning those lessons in 2017, just like I planned to do so in 2016, 2015, and well…before.
So, let’s cut out the bullshit and talk about semi-adulting so as to bounce back from a heavy night of partying with a preemptive and more manageable approach.
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POPULAR WAYS TO DIFFUSE A HANGOVER
There are two ways to get over a hangover, at least by popular cultural anecdotes anyway.
There’s detoxing, which usually means eating but more so drinking particular concoctions which flush one’s body from toxic substances.
This method doesn’t particularly work for me. When I’ve had a night of excessive drinking I’m not well poised to detox the day after. Like, I ain’t about that goji berry life when I feel like I’m going to hurl my insides.
The opposite approach is to eat anything, even if it’s not particularly healthy, to move past the nausea and brain imploding headaches by any means possible. Some people swear by coffee, greasy eggs, and bacon, or drinking tons of sports drinks. Still others subscribe to the ole ‘hair of the dog’ antic i.e. drinking more alcohol to cure drinking too much.
Going this route doesn’t sit well with me either. It makes me further feel like crap from drinking and eating processed crap to get over the drinking too much and feeling like crappy Mc Crap crap.
The best way to go? I think it’s moderation, of course, but also, it’s striking a balance between a strict detox and relying on fat and processed foods alone for getting back on your feet.
Below, you’ll find my suggestions for how to rock New Year’s Eve and not feel like you’re going to throw up your insides come Jan 1st. Ah, goals. Shall we?
ADULTING A LITTLE AND PLANNING AHEAD
My number one advice is to plan ahead.
No, planning ahead does not mean keeping your pad well stocked with copious amounts of vodka in the event you run out. Planning ahead means keeping your home stocked with food and (non- alcoholic) drinks for strategic consumption.
Why is this so important? Because when you’re hungover and outta whack, you’re not going to have the stamina to stand on your feet and blend a smoothie or whip up eggs and bacon to feel better. So it’s important to keep your kitchen stocked with no brainer healthy shit to get you on the road to recovery.
I always laugh in particular when I read articles that advise blending a smoothie to get through a hangover.
I’m like bruh, if my head already feels like someone is drilling from the inside out, the noise of a blender is going to be intolerable.
What to do then?
Adult-up and do a little grocery shopping before January 1 and prep simple munchables ahead of time.
Some items to keep stocked:
- water bottles
- coconut water
- fresh ginger
- fresh lemon
- turkey bacon
Water and coconut water are going to keep you hydrated. Coconut water in particular is chock full of electrolytes and is far superior in the nutrients it offers in comparison to sports drinks. Plus 100% pure coconut water is hella delicious and easier to stomach than plain ole water.
Bananas are an excellent source of potassium which is exactly what your body needs to repair itself after a night of heavy drinking. Also, there is no prep involved here. Just peel and eat— even the drunkest of drunkies should be able to manage that. Er, right?
Fresh ginger helps manage nausea. Grated ginger with hot water can sooth your body post vomiting, or can even help keep queasy feelings and actual vomiting at bay altogether.
You may not have the ability to grate fresh ginger the morning after NYE so this is something you can easily do ahead of time. Simply grate fresh ginger and keep it in the fridge. On the first of Jan, crawl to the kitchen and stick about a heaping spoon full of already grated ginger into one cup of water, heat, and drink up. Go back to bed.
The same goes for lemon water. Keep lemon wedges cut and refrigerated. Squeeze into water and drink the morning after. The vitamin C found in lemons helps cleanse your system and halt liver inflammation. The more lemon water you drink, the better.
You probably won’t be able to cook if you’re hungover. Boil eggs the day before and refrigerate them. Also, cook off turkey bacon the day before and store in the refrigerator. All you’ll have to do is nuke ’em in the morning to get some non-greasy protein packed food in your belly.
BEFORE AND AFTER: WHY IT’S ALL IMPORTANT
Another important thing to remember is this: What you eat before a night of partying is just as important as what you eat after if you don’t want to feel shitty.
Don’t make the mistake of assuming that eating well, or a lot, after you binge drink will reduce the intensity of your hangover.
It’s equally important to eat well before you rage. In fact, some truly sound advice that years of partying have taught me is the importance of being super hydrated before you go off to your pre-game shenanigans.
This means starting December 31st with plenty of water (be it plain or with the ginger or lemon as described above) and coconut water. In fact, I say chug, chug, chug—that coconut water. Look, it won’t trick your body out of alcohol poisoning. But loading your body up with electrolytes before and after partying will reduce the risk of hangover woes.
It’s also important to eat well on the 31st. I know, I know, you’re tempted to skip a meal to slither into your hot lil dress for the NYE party you’re hittin’ up. But trust me, your body will not reward you for skipping a meal.
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There are foods you can eat which won’t make you look or feel bloated which will keep you stay comfortably full. Eating balanced meals before you drink will also make you less susceptible to getting so crunk drunk that you can’t function for the better half of the night. So what should you eat?
Grilled or baked chicken, salmon, quinoa, hummus, and avocado make for excellent pre-party foods to help your blood alcohol level from increasing.
Desi it up before you party it up and eat roti and egg curry beforehand so you can get some healthy carbs and protein in your system. Trust me, your body will thank you!
FINAL WORDS OF WISDOM
Do you, girl, but be responsible. You can still have fun and take care of yourself. Eat, drink, and be merry (but not stupid), ya feel?
Happy New Year!
To see more of Soni’s original food articles and comics, visit facebook.com/sketchydesi.
Soni Satpathy-Singh is a recipe developer and content writer who resides in Manhattan. She is either always cooking or eating be it for work or simply because she loves to! She is working on her own comic cookbook as her alter ego “Sketchy Desi.” Stay tuned to upcoming posts on Brown Girl Magazine.