I love this topic. In fact, I’ve written about it a few times before. If you’re interested in learning if and how alcohol affects muscle building, strength and fat loss – stay tuned for more tips!
Let’s start by getting two things out of the way:RELATED: RECOMMENDED PLANS FOR YOU
1. I think it’s safe to say that most people will over-indulge with drinks over the festive holiday and on New Year’s Eve, and proper nutrition is the way to go in reducing your New Year’s day hangover.
2. I’m sorry to say that there in no actual hangover cure, but there are many ways to reduce a hangover, or help you recover quickly from one.
Enjoy the New Year – I have the hangover covered
One of the main reasons why I love this topic is because I love to let loose and party for New Years and the holidays!
The average alcohol consumption goes up during these times of the year. So much so, that some hospitals report many ER visits from people who have “holiday heart arrhythmia”.
An alcohol induced version of arrhythmia that usually goes away, and isn’t too concerning, but it is a warning sign.
I’ve listed a few of the top hangover “cures” below:
1. Hydration (water + electrolytes)
Hydration is key to reducing the effects of a hangover.
I’m sure you’ve noticed that having a glass of water before bed helps a bit the next morning. Re-filling that glass and keeping it bedside for the morning is also important.
However, your electrolyte balance plays a HUGE roll in how you feel and how well you re-hydrate.
Electrolytes are crucial not only to hydration but to regular functions of life as well. They are essential minerals that your body can’t make, meaning you need to get them through the diet.
In terms of hydration, they help direct certain amounts of water into parts of the body that need it.
They are also crucial to the function of the nervous system and they are used to contract and relax your muscles.
When you drink alcohol, it not only dehydrates you, but it also depletes many vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function optimally. The decrease in electrolytes is one reason why you feel so crappy and lethargic the next morning.
Solution: Try a sports drink that has electrolytes in it either before bed, or in the morning when you wake up. You’ll be glad you did.
2. Eating fatty foods
As much as I hate to admit it, eating a big dirty meal before drinking can help cure your hangover (if you can stomach it).
Some of the fatty acids can help act as a lining of the stomach and because they take longer to digest.
It also slows the process of alcohol digestion. This is also a common strategy to do the morning after drinking.
The mixture of a high calorie breakfast with a mixed ratio of carbs, fat and protein can be beneficial in balancing blood glucose levels, providing vitamins and minerals that have been depleted and again, coating the stomach for some relief.
Solution: If you choose to eat a big breakfast after, certain ingredients will help more than others.
Eggs are great, especially if you care about fitness.
They’re a quality protein source so you preserve your muscles AND they are rich in an amino acid called “cysteine” which helps break down toxins such as alcohol.
4. Greek Yogurt + Fruit
Greek yogurt is another phenomenal protein source with a creamy texture that can also sooth the stomach lining.
When couples with fruits (especially berries), your body will use its antioxidants to fight off the free radicals that alcohol produces in the body.
Those are just a few proven remedies
Common folklore speaks of many crazy (and gross) sounding remedies and most are some form of fermented food that may not seem appealing.
However, some research has proven fermented foods like pickles to be soothing for the stomach during a hangover and they do carry electrolytes as well.
What about exercise?
I know… that’s why I saved it for last.
IF you SOMEHOW, SOMEWAY get your butt out of bed, going for a light aerobic workout will help you rid your body of toxins, and any left over alcohol itself.
The body does so in two ways.
1. Sweats out toxins and increases your metabolism
2. Increases your HR which in turn increases your breathing volume.
Yes, you can actually breathe out alcohol from your body. Although not a whole lot in the grand scheme, you may be releasing 2-3 or more times the amount you would if you weren’t exercising.
This does NOT apply to strength training.
Your nervous system is for the bin the day after heavy drinking. You won’t be as strong, or have as much work capacity so unless you’re doing a “de-load” workout, or aerobic exercise, you’re better of skipping the gym that day.
So if you happen to drink a bit too much new year’s eve, don’t forget to give these remedies a try, in order from first to last.
Connect with Expert Chris Diamantakos