It’s New Year’s Eve, and you know what that means: celebration! There’s a good chance you’ll be clinking flutes tonight with friends, loved ones, or strangers. But that next-day hangover can feel like punishment for a night of fun. Good news: Enjoying a glass (or three!) of alcohol doesn’t have to mean nausea, fatigue, and head pain — you can toast today and feel great tomorrow. Here are three smart ways to avoid hangovers.
To prevent queasiness… savor ‘smashed’ avocado
To outsmart the next-day nausea that often occurs after a night out, try this: An hour before you leave the house, eat a snack packed with healthy fats, such as “smashed” superfood avocado on toast drizzled with olive oil. Doing so can help block queasiness, even if you do sip an extra cocktail or two. It works in two ways: Beneficial dietary fats create a protective lining in your gut; plus, they help alcohol absorb into the bloodstream more slowly. This prevents the liver from releasing a flood of acetaldehyde, a toxic compound that researchers have pinpointed as a top cause of hangover-induced nausea.
To block headaches… salt your glass of water
Being even mildly dehydrated is enough to cause throbbing head pain. And alcohol switches off a hydration-regulating hormone called vasopressin, causing your body to lose more liquid than it takes in from wine, beer, or a cocktail. But simply adding some salt to your water consumption may help replenish necessary electrolytes. Salt’s minerals can boost water’s power to hydrate — and without the cost or added calories of electrolyte drinks. Simply fill a reusable water bottle with 16 ounces of water and ⅛ teaspoon of Himalayan salt or sea salt before heading out. Sip in between alcoholic drinks and you may be able to block head pain.
To dodge next-day fatigue… try nature’s ‘hangover pill’
Wish you could enjoy a tipple without feeling wiped out in the a.m.? A study published in Food & Function suggests taking Panax ginseng after your last drink can cut hangover symptoms. The medicinal root is widely used in Asian countries for enhancing memory and improving stamina, but studies have also found that Red Ginseng significantly mitigates hangover severity following heavy drinking. You can find it in supplement form: Buy from Amazon, $9.97 for 120 capsules.
This content is not a substitute for professional medical advice or diagnosis. Always consult your physician before pursuing any treatment plan.
A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, Woman’s World.