We’ve all been there, that dreaded hangover on the morning after the night before! We take a look at 9 natural ways to help beat a hangover…
Avoid sugar before, during and after
Instead, stick to protein and unrefined carbs.
“Before, during and after drinking it’s best to avoid sugary foods and drinks, as alcohol consumption tends to play havoc with energy and blood sugar control. It’s better to focus on protein and unrefined carbohydrates, which release glucose slowly,” says nutritionist and author Dr Marilyn Glenville.
Caffeine and spicy foods are also a no-go, as they not only make you more dehydrated but can irritate your stomach too.
Grab a nourishing night time snack
We’re not talking a kebab or the fried chicken you’ve made your Uber stop at on the way home, but something nourishing and detoxing instead.
Nutritionist Cassandra Barns recommends: “Stay away from foods that contain high levels of unhealthy fats. These include fried foods, foods that contain hydrogenated fats (found mainly in margarines and processed foods), and poor quality, cheap cooking oils.
“The liver has to work extra hard to process these types of fats, when it is already under strain dealing with the alcohol and its breakdown products. Unhealthy fats can also worsen any inflammation in the body, which can add to the effects of the inflammatory cytokines that (as we saw above) could contribute to hangover symptoms.”
Run in the morning
It’s probably the last thing you feel like doing the morning after, but if you can bring yourself to do something active, you’ll feel a million times better; the movement gets your blood circulating and helps to speed up the detoxification process. You’ll quite literally sweat out the bad stuff.
Remember to stay super hydrated though, as this will add to your dehydration.
Swap hair of the dog for a downward dog
Focused breathing is an important aspect of Pilates and can help with any nausea you may be feeling, whilst also being a great way to take your mind off your hangover!
“Anyone who does Pilates regularly will recognise the moment, a few minutes into a session, when you get an overwhelming sense of release and calm, and, dare I say it, even joy,” says Lynne Robinson, Founder of Body Control Pilates and author of Pilates For Life.
“As your breathing deepens and settles into its rhythm, as your spine lengthens and unravels, as your deep core muscles connect and your limbs stretch out, mind and body unite and you suddenly feel in control. The world seems to be a better place.”
Feed up on fruit
The water and mineral content of fruit helps to rehydrate your body, and hopefully put an end to a miserable migraine or hangover headache.
Stick to pears, which are said to help your body metabolise alcohol, or berries, which are rich in antioxidants and great for offering protection against free radicals, which are considered another hangover cause.
Try bone broth
“If you make your own broth or stock at home using animal bones, vegetables and a pinch or two of sea salt, you could do worse than drinking a cup or two of this the morning after,” says Shona Wilkinson, Nutritionist at Superfooduk.com.
“Bone broth contains lots of minerals that are naturally released from the bones during cooking – and these, together with the salt, could help to fight fatigue and boost your energy levels. The amino acids it contains can help to soothe the gut lining too.”
…and activated charcoal
“It’s actually used in the treatment of some kinds of poisoning, because it absorbs toxins and helps them to be removed from the body. However, it would make sense to take the charcoal during or shortly after drinking alcohol rather than the next morning, as it binds toxins in the gut before they can be absorbed,” says Shona.
If you’ve got the stomach for it, pickle juice
Sounds vile but its supposedly proven to work.
“The vinegar could be stimulating the liver to help detoxify and eliminate the alcohol. When pickles ferment, they also produce a certain type of soothing bacteria to help with irritated stomach,” explains Cassandra.
Remember your magnesium
Alcohol can deplete the magnesium stores in your body, which many of us are already deficient in.
Add magnesium rich foods like leafy green veg to your diet or stock up on a supplement.