‘Tis the season and that only means one thing…hangovers.
If you drink it’s pretty easy to overindulge during the festive season as you hop from party to party enjoying a cocktail here and a glass of prosecco there, all fuelled by holiday spirit. It’s a wonderful time of the year, full of socialising and catching up, but that means it can be pretty easy to make exceptions that throw your normal routine into disarray and leave you with a banging headache!
While there are lots of amazing no- and low-alcohol options out there to help you avoid overdoing things during the festive season, we thought it would also be a good idea to get some tips for handling Christmas hangovers from lead nutritionist at Lifesum, Signe Svanfeldt, just incase things do get out of hand.
First up, why do we get hangovers?
Hangovers are when our bodies are handling and recovering from an excessive alcohol intake. Alcohol is toxic, which our body needs to break down. It makes us feel tired, nauseous and can lead to a headache. How quickly our bodies break down the alcohol varies with individuals, but is usually around 0,1 grams per kg body weight an hour.
Sounds less than fun! What can we do to reduce the effects of a hangover? Are there any foods or drinks that can help us get through the post-party blues?
First of all, the most important thing is to not drink on an empty stomach as this raises the alcohol level in the blood quicker than on a full stomach. The composition of food also impacts the speed of the alcohol absorption. When we eat foods rich in fat (such as nuts, avocado and seeds), we absorb the alcohol at a slower pace. Unfortunately, there isn’t any specific food or beverage that reduces the effects on a hangover if we still consume the same amount of alcohol. It’s all about trying to drink in moderation. Although there are, of course, foods that can help us to feel better in general, including:
· Fruit & vegetables of all kinds
· Whole grains such as barley, oats, whole grain bread
· Unsaturated fats such as avocado, nuts & seeds
· Water – basically all organs in our body need water to function properly, which makes water consumption a vital part of our everyday life
Avo on toast and a big bottle of water feels like a good post-party plan! What else can we do to make our hangovers a little easier to deal with?
There are a few things you can do to make things a little easier for yourself.
· Always make sure to have water nearby, and sip on it when you’re thirsty followed by the alcoholic drink when you want to enjoy the taste of it, but don’t relieve your thirst with an alcoholic drink.
· Make sure you have balanced meals throughout the day when you know you’ll consume alcohol. If you need advice on how to build a balanced, nutritious meal, try the Lifesum app that will guide you through the process.
· Make sure that you stay hydrated throughout the day. The water tracker app from Lifesum will help you to monitor water intake and keep hydrated throughout the day.