Best Ways To Cure Your Hangover
According to the immortal Ernest Hemingway if you don’t wake up with a hangover in the morning you didn’t really experience the nightlife. That might be a bit harsh but coming to with a hangover (as opposed to waking up) is often considered the price we pay for holiday, birthday, bachelor parties or just going out for “a couple” when an old friend rolls into town. The headache, upset stomach, mental sluggishness, dry mouth and lack of energy that accompanies the hangover have been thorns in the side of partiers since Roman times and everyone has their own prescription for how to transcend them. Below we’ve brought together a dozen methods you may want to consider to chase away your next hangover.
1. Caffeine with H2O Chaser
Some will take the revisionist line that coffee beans are no good for a hangover. With all due respect we say balderdash! If you have a coffee maker fire it up. If you have an espresso machine then even better. Make yourself a double shot and chase it with a large glass of water. Within minutes the fog should start to clear. You don’t need to drink an entire pot of coffee but you’re going to need something to chase the bats from the belfry and a good strong jolt of caffeine should do the trick. Just don’t forget the water because one reason you have that headache is because you dehydrated yourself peeing so much last night.
2. The Cold Shower
Few things will reset your compass and bring you back to planet earth quite as effectively as a cold shower. If you think it will be too great a shock to your system start with cool water and gradually ratchet it down in temperature. Just make sure that you don’t enter the shower stall in a stupor and wind up slipping and falling. Wait until you’ve got your sea legs under you. It’s probably a good idea to consider a multi-pronged approach where the shower follows the caffeine and water and puts the finishing touches on your recovery. Or at least ensures that when you head out the front door that you are firing on most of your cylinders.
3. You Gotta Move
When the demon is at your door it can be difficult enough to crawl to the edge of the bed and sit up. Never mind put on your running shoes and go for a run. But one of the best ways to chase away a hangover is to get some of the alcohol-soaked blood moving through your veins. Getting your heart pumping will not only bring much needed oxygen to your brain but will also help you sweat out the toxins in your system faster. Remember, the word “intoxicated” means that you’ve consumed toxins. That is, you poisoned yourself. So you won’t start to feel like your normal self until you clear the toxins from your system. So hop on the assault bike or just go out and take a quick walk around the block. And don’t forget to drink enough water. By the time you’re finished you’re going to feel a lot better and then you can think about some food.
4. Some Quality Herb and a Coke
This is kind of like saying the best cure for a broken nose is to get some teeth knocked out so you forget the pain from the nose. Still, some folks are sold on the idea that the best way to cure a hangover is to get blitzed on some styling herb. Does it actually work? Well, a few people we won’t name can attest to the fact that even if it doesn’t get rid of your hangover it will alter your relationship with reality to a sufficient degree that the hangover won’t really matter. Some suggest throwing in some spicy food as a kind of adjunct to the joint and chasing everything down with an ice cold Coke. But scientific evidence of such an approach working is understandably lacking. On the other hand, if sparking up a doobie isn’t really your style consider this alternative hangover cure from the late, great Hunter S. Thompson: “12 amyl nitrates in conjunction with as many beers as necessary.” Just make sure you have the local ambulance service on speed dial. If your goal is to restore optimal mental and physical performance levels as quickly as possible, neither of these is likely to deliver you to the Promised Land. If however, you view a hangover as nothing but a prelude to the next trip down the rabbit hole, then you might want get yourself on board one of these ferries.
After coming to on the bean bag chair and crawling into the bathroom to survey the damage, food may be the last thing on your mind. But it might be exactly what the doctor ordered. You don’t have to sit down to one of those vast German-style buffet breakfasts (although that might not hurt either) but offering your system something besides alcohol to chew on is not a bad idea. Try starting with something simple, like a slice of bread or a piece of toast. If that stays down graduate to a muffin or a piece of fruit. Chase it down with a big glass of water. If you’re up for something more substantial make is something that’s protein or mineral rich, like chicken soup. If your hands are shaking too much to cook just crack a couple of eggs and mix them in a cup with some ham and a few small chunks of cheese and toss it in the microwave for a couple of minutes. Then grab a spoon and enjoy your snack.
6. Go Back to Sleep
Now that we’ve reached the halfway point we feel it’s not totally irresponsible to suggest the nuclear option: turning off the alarm clock and going back to sleep. Of course, if it’s a work day this isn’t going to cut it. But if you wake up on a Sunday morning and it feels like the repo man has come and claimed your brain going back to sleep might be the best option. Like surgery and rom-coms hangovers are often best experienced while unconscious. As we said earlier, you feel like crap because you poisoned yourself. And depending on how thoroughly intoxicated you were your body may need to remain shut down for a while in order to conduct necessary repairs. A few extra hours in the sack then may be just what the doctor ordered. So kill the alarm and go back to sleep.
Honey is rich in antioxidants that help neutralize the toxins coursing through your body. After drinking some water try a spoonful of honey and then wash it down with some more water or fruit juice from your juicer. The natural fructose in the honey will attack the alcohol and reduce it to harmless constituent parts that can then be flushed out of the system. If a spoonful of honey seems like a bit too much to swallow try drizzling it over some fresh fruit or mixing it with green tea or even straight into a cup of hot water. Whatever gets it into your system, where it needs to be. Just don’t overdo it. Too much honey could complicate things by spiking your blood sugar levels, which are already likely out of whack from all the alcohol. So a spoonful of honey, then move on to the shower or home gym equipment.
8. Listen to Some Music
Popping on your running headphones and listening to some of your favorite tunes is a great way to distract your brain from the number you did on it last night. Essentially, it helps reset your brain by introducing something familiar and steering the grey matter down positive, well-worn pathways. Music also has the ability to help relieve nausea by properly orienting you to the world. The closer the tunes are to your heart the more substantial and immediate will be the effects. But do yourself a favor and skip the death metal. At least until you are up and on your feet and all your senses are back online.
This is a tasty alternative to the treadmill or the brisk walk around the block that serves essentially the same purpose. If you emerged from your stupor next to a consenting adult, whether they be someone you’ve had a thang with for a long time or someone you fell into the arms of while singing “What do you do with a drunken sailor” at the dockside bar last night try rolling over and having at it. A bit of the old in-out, in-out can work miracles. Not only is it delightfully nasty to engage in a morning how-do-you-do while you’re both still reeling from last night’s pub crawl but the energy you expend will help you sweat out toxins and get oxygen flowing to your brain. Alternatively, if you awake to find the other side of the bed as empty as a political promise there’s always the self-service option. Believe it or not, taking matters into your own hands can help because, if nothing else, the endorphins you release when you, uh finish, will help you face the day with a more positive mindset.
10. Brush Your Teeth
This might sound like a head-scratcher but bear with us. There is something to be said for taking that toxic waste dump you call a hangover mouth into the bathroom first thing after waking up and working it over with the electric toothbrush for 3 of 4 minutes. Some cool mint toothpaste can work wonders when it comes to making you feel human again. Wash your mouth out thoroughly with clean water when done then top it off with your favorite mouthwash and voila! Follow up your brush by splashing some nice cold water on your face. It may not bring you all the way back to 100 percent but it will help both mind and body regain their footing in the real world and provide a springboard to a full recovery.
It may seem like the last thing on earth you want but the fact is many people swear by the recuperative properties of grease. It’s probably a good idea not to indulge this particular cure until the worst of nausea has passed. But once the stomach has stopped churning and you feel like you might be able to saunter out try making your way to any place that serves grilled slabs of grease, and prepare to put the finishing touches on your hangover recovery. Make sure you order plenty of fries as well.
12. Don’t F-ing Drink so Much
An ounce of prevention, as they say, is worth a pound of cure. “They” are pretty wise because the best way to cure a hangover is not to create one in the first place. It can be hard to say no when the good times are rolling and you’re surrounded by friends and/or family. The good times, after all, are what we live for. But there’s a difference between having a good time while enjoying the company of those who sustain us and drinking so much that you start spewing your darkest secrets to the next-door neighbor or wake up the next morning beside your ex. Have a few, get a bit loose, even join in a few bars of “Drunken Sailor”. Why the hell not? But remember that tomorrow morning the bill is going to come due for tonight’s revelry and the more booze you toss down your gullet the larger that bill is going to be.
There is no perfect cure for a hangover. That much is crystal clear. But a hangover doesn’t have to be a seemingly endless ordeal that sabotages your whole day. The above tips may help you navigate the morning after in a way that gets you back into the game as quickly as is reasonable to hope.