Thursday, March 13, 2014

Have a Happy St. Patty’s Day… Minus the Hangover

st patrick's day clover
If you're planning on getting a drink or three for St. Patty's Day, keep these foods in mind to minimize hangovers.
Planning on going out for a good time this St. Patty’s Day? I’m Irish, so I’m all about that. Unfortunately, though, as I get older I’m especially noticing that my body is way less tolerant of alcohol than it once was. I never was much of a drinker, but I’m even less so now. I suppose that’s good news in the long run—having more than one or two drinks max per day generally makes our bodies cringe a little bit.

However, there are still times when I like to go out and have more than just one drink with friends—heck, maybe I’ll even have two or three! The question that comes to mind then is, How can I help my body recover faster?

bananas potassium
Bananas are full of potassium.
Believe it or not, what kind of foods we eat before and after a night on the town can have a huge effect on how we feel the next day. So, if you’re planning on drinking more than a pint this St. Patty’s Day, plan on eating some of these foods to help your body recover:

Asparagus – Boosts enzymes and helps break down alcohol. Eat before, during, or after going out to help with hangovers.

Bananas – Restore full muscle function by giving them a good boost of potassium. It helps with those day-after shakes you might sometimes feel. On that same note, kiwi and spinach are also loaded with potassium.

Clear Liquids – Before, during, and after drinking, focus on clear liquids rather than those rich in color. Drinks with brandy, bourbon, red wine, tequila, and others are rich in cogeners, which means they’re far more likely to cause a hangover. Drink a glass of water in between each drink as well as in earnest before going to sleep.

honey removes toxins, restores antioxidants, fructose
Honey gets toxins out and restores antioxidants and fructose.
Coconut Water – Coconuts, and coconut products are amazing. Coconut water is no exception. Filled with electrolytes without all the artificial ingredients, it’ll help restore your body faster than sugary sports drinks.

Eggs – Organic pastured eggs will give your body some much needed protein, which helps to break down toxins and restore vitamins drained by alcohol.

Honey – Eat raw honey with a few crackers to restore antioxidants and fructose. This will help flush out your system and get rid of any toxins that might still be lingering the day after.

Organic Broth – Drink clear organic broth the day after drinking help replace lost sodium and potassium in your body.

prickly pear anti-inflammatory
Prickly pear helps soothe inflammation.
Prickly Pear – Offsets inflammation caused by alcohol if consumed as a fruit, in capsule form, or as a tea or juice a few hours before the party starts. Delicious and nutritious!

Tea – Craft a cuppa ginger or peppermint tea to ease any nausea you might have. I’d stick with herbal blends until you’re sure your body can handle caffeine.

Toast – Your liver is too busy processing alcohol to regulate blood sugar, which means that you’re very likely to be lacking in that department. Pop a few slices in the toaster and top them with butter (I also like cinnamon and sugar on mine). It’ll help get your blood sugar back up as well as settling an upset stomach.

Tomato Juice – Vitamin and mineral-rich tomato juice might be just what you need after St. Patty’s Day. It’ll rehydrate your body and flush out toxins from your system, leaving you feeling refreshed.

Quinoa – Your amino acids also get drained by alcohol, but quinoa can help replace them! Plus, its nice neutral flavor will be easy to stomach even when you’re not feeling so great.

coffee herbal tea
Trade the coffee for a soothing herbal tea instead.
And a few things to avoid (even if you think you’re craving them), as they’ll likely irritate your stomach even more:

Greasy food
Orange or grapefruit juice

What are your favorite foods and drinks after a night on the town?

All images are from Shutterstock.