Let’s face it: it’s Christmas, so you’re probably going to overdo it. And that’s completely fine – you’ll find no judgement here. But if there were a few tips and tricks to help you through the *ehem* indulgence, you’d want to know about them, right?
Well, you’re in luck. The morning after may not be a complete write-off thanks to these hangover prevention and cure tips from nutritional expert Geeta Sidhu-Robb, Founder of Nosh Detox. Follow these to wake up feeling festive, rather than frail:
1 Never drink on an empty stomach
Drinking on an empty stomach can lead to the rate of alcohol absorption being the equivalent to receiving the same amount intravenously. Protein rich foods are the safest option as they take longer to digest, which then slows down how fast your blood alcohol level increases.
2 Avoid congeners
Drinks containing congeners increase the intensity of hangovers – common culprits containing the ingredient are Tequila and Whiskey. Colourless spirits are low in congeners, and typically leave a less severe hangover, so bring on the vodka tonics!
3 Skip bubbles
Bad news: it’s scientifically proven that the bubbles actually accelerate the absorption of alcohol, hence the saying ‘the bubbles have gone to my head.’ Consuming bubbly alcoholic drinks will result in you getting more drunk more quickly which then leads to terrible hangovers. Champagne in particular is a recipe for disaster – sorry!
4 Take vitamins
Your body uses essential vitamins and minerals when digesting and metabolising alcohol, leading to a depletion of vitamins and a worse hangover. Before a heavy night of drinking, help your liver out and take vitamin supplements, particularly vitamin B, as alcohol destroys it when consumed.
5 Avoid diet mixers
Avoid the diet drink myth! Diet mixers such as diet lemonade and diet coke contain no calories or sugar, which leads to alcohol entering directly into the bloodstream. Juices are a better alternative as they are not carbonated and decrease the speed of alcohol absorption, meaning you can celebrate more during the festive period.
Dehydration is the main cause of a hangover, so drinking a large glass of water before you go to sleep and once you’ve woken up will have you feeling better in the morning. A rehydration sachet is a good idea as it will also help you replace lost electrolytes as well as rehydrate you.
2 Take vitamins, again
Just as it is wise to take vitamin supplements before a night of drinking, you should also take supplements the day after. This will help replenish any vitamins that were used during the metabolism of alcohol the night before.
3 Eat some eggs
Whether scrambled, poached or fried; eggs are full of amino acids which boost liver function and help breakdown acetaldehyde, which is the headache-causing chemical that is left over after the liver breaks down ethanol. Proof that the full English really is the ultimate hangover cure!
4 Avoid caffeine
We know, we know, sometimes a brew is just what you fancy when you’ve a cloudy head. But try not to overload your body with it. Too much caffeine will irritate your hydration levels and leave you feeling worse for wear.
5 Drink ginger and peppermint tea
Studies suggest sipping on ginger or peppermint tea to soothe hangover-related nausea and stomach aches. Plus the extra water you take in will help you rid yourself of that hangover.