The consumption of alcohol has many effects on the human body, even when consumed in small amounts changes can still be detected in out hormones, body chemicals and motor skills, we may also experience nausea, headaches, muscle ache, light sensitivity and diarrhoea. The excessive consumption of alcohol on a regular basis can also lead to some serious long-term health risks but for this article, we will just be focusing on the short term effects and easy ways we are able to treat them through food.
There are many old wives tails when it comes to how to cure a hangover and this is large to the lack of scientific research that has been invested in methods to treat hangovers with food. Large pharmaceutical companies have invented various tablets that are marketed to have the ability to make your hangover go away but these are often over priced and no as satisfying as a meal or, at least, some form of food. Although we agree most of the old wives tails are ineffective and there is no magical food that can cure a hangover completely there are some foods that we can use to our advantage as they possess natural property that helps fuel, recharge and refresh out bodies when we consume them. So when we are asked what is the best food for hangovers we usually recommend any of these.
What Is The Best Food To Eat When Hungover?
So, what is the best food for hangover? Well believe it or not the best thing you can consume to help you get over a hangover is not actually a food at all but a drink, and that drink is good old water. It is recommended that everyone consumes a minimum of two laters of water per day to maintain a healthy body, when hungover our bodies are often extremely dehydrated and we are commonly able to drink at least one litre of water when waking up after a night of drinking simply because out body requires rehydration so badly.
Alcohol is a diuretic, this means that when it is consumed it flushes the other liquids we have in out bodies out. This includes out bodies water stores. When this happens and our bodies detect we are running low on water it will try to replenish its water levels by drawing water from its available sources. As you are not consuming any water it is unable to get it from the stomach so it will look to withdraw it from other organs such as the brain. This is the main reason we experience a headache when we are hungover, out bodies have drawn water from out brain to hydrate the rest of us. Often, consuming a few cups of water will rehydrate our bodies and the headache will be cured.
An easy way to prevent a headache all together is to try and remember to consume around a litre of water before going to sleep after consuming alcohol, this way our bodies will be able to rehydrate us to some level while we sleep and reduce the severity of the handover.
Commercial Sports Drinks
Research has shown that the consumption of a high sugar sports drink when hungover can assist the body in removing the hangover effects due to the sudden increase of liquids and electrolytes. Although most sports drinks contain only two of the essential electrolytes found in the human body they will still help cure our handover symptoms.
Natures Own Miracle Cure
Believe it or not, mother nature has provided us with the best drink to consume when hungover and that is coconut water. It contains the benefits of consuming both water and sports drinks in one but also contains added vitamins and minerals as well as five of the essential electrolytes required by the human body to function. It contains far fewer calories than sports drinks but does so much more for our bodies. It rehydrates us, provides up with electrolytes, gives out bodies essential vitamins and minerals and thankfully is cheap when compared to some of the sports drinks available on the market.
Will Drinking Tea Help My Hangover?
Although some types of tea are also diuretic similar to alcohol it is still beneficial to drink when you are hungover. All types of tea contain anti oxidants and have the ability to help refresh your bodies. On top of this most types, Peppermint or Ginger based teas are also widely recognised as a natural remedy for nausea.
Pregnant women commonly consume peppermint tea as a natural treatment for morning sickness but on top of this, it also has the ability to treat stomach aches that you maybe experiencing due to dehydration while at the same time removing the nausea effect.
Will Coffee Help My Hangover?
Although a common recommendation to cure a handover, science is still out on this one. There are numerous studies that offer evidence to support both sides of the argument but coffee is a stronger diuretic than tea meaning it will not help hydrate your body as much as it. Additionally, the caffeine may enhance the feeling of nausea when consumed with very little on your stomach.
On the flip side of this research has indicated that caffeine is an excellent natural anti-inflammatory so has the ability to reduce the aches and pains in your muscles as well as have a beneficial effect on your headache.
What Is A Good Food For A Hangover?
One of the best natural and healthy good goods for a hangover are eggs, they are quick and easy to prepare, cheap and taste good. They are jam packed with vitamins, minerals, amino acids and macro nutrients.
They are an excellent source of the amino acids Cysteine and Taurine. Taurine helps boost the livers natural functions and prevent liver disease but when hungover it also helps the liver flush out the bad toxins in your body left over from the alcohol. Cysteine helps to reduce the amount of acetaldehyde in your blood stream and get you back to feeling normal quicker.
Natural foods high in potassium such as leafy greens, bananas or dates are also an excellent source of electrolytes. When drunk your body often flushes out its current electrolytes so eating a banana is an excellent way to restore them. You can make an excellent hangover-fighting smoothie by making a potassium super charged shake with bananas, yoghurt and dates. You can throw in some blueberries too for the added boost of anti oxidants to help you feel better quicker.
A bowl of oats are another way to refresh your body, they are high in essential vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin B, Calcium, Iron and Magnesium. They are also a natural PH stabiliser and can help neutralise aides in the body. Although oats contain slow releasing energy they will provide a rapid energy boost when your body is in a hungover state. When people ask me directly what is the best food when hungover I always tell them that my personal favourite hangover cure is a bowl of warm oats, with chopped banana, blueberries and honey.
Greasy Food For Hangover Treatment
Although a preemptive move to prevent a hangover, going out to your local fast food joint and eating a burger and fries before consuming alcohol can help reduce the effects of a hangover. This is because of the high fat content and fatty acids essentially place a protective layer on your stomach lining preventing as much alcohol being absorbed into the blood stream.
Any greasy, fatty food will be able to offer you this effect but be aware consuming large amounts of fast food can be extremely detrimental to your health and cause long-term health issues.
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