We’ve all been there. There’s a big juicy chicken on the table, roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and lashings of gravy, its roast dinner time. And what better way to top it all off, the cherry on the cake, a nice glass (or 4) of red wine, lovely.
But let’s face it, none of us are 21 anymore and the reality is that hangovers kick in a little easier than they once did.
Never fear, TRUTH are here with a big bag of help. We asked our mate Ed Tooley, Performance nutritionist for England Rugby League, Sam Maxwell (WBO European boxing belt holder) and nutritional advisor to Jordan, Taekwondo federation, to give us an insight into how we can help combat the repercussions of us enjoying ourselves.
“In comes the nutritionist and people expect me to say “oh we shouldn’t drink” yada yada yada, but we’re all human!
So how can we enjoy ourselves but minimise the damage.
Here are my top tips to avoiding hangovers:
- Eating is not cheating… a substantial meal prior to drinking helps line the stomach and slows down the time it takes for alcohol to affect us.
- Stay hydrated… Alcohol is a diuretic and dehydration is a big cause of next day’s headaches. It’s been proven that hangovers are less severe in drinks such as spirits with a low-calorie mixer over drinking straight spirits such as brandy (in-between from less severe to severe looking at beer, white wine, whisky, red wine), so consider what you are drinking and if it is something at the more severe end of the scale then maybe play 1,2 miss a few every so often and have a glass of water between rounds.
- Refuel post session… Ethanol (the alcohol we consume) effects our liver glycogen and causes some rebound hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar), something which you may have heard as to why diabetics can have issues with insulin after drinking. We could go and eat on the way home, but that’s an easy way to add 1000kcals onto a night that’s already high in calories, so have a carbohydrate containing snack or drink ready for you when you get home to help with those blood sugar levels before bed.
- Salts help… probably a little intuition as to why we try to steer towards salty, carb-based foods at the end of the night. But salt also helps minimise the hangover by replacing electrolytes lost in excess urination and helps the body absorb the fluids we are rehydrating with. Combining this tip and last, I would say a rehydration solution before bed such as Dioralyte is perfect with its combination of fluids, electrolytes and carbohydrates (this is what I personally practice… pint of Dioralyte on the bedside table waiting for me).
- Go fresh and go colourful… The next day could easily start with the calling of a café or the Golden Arches, but the fatty foods will only trigger some momentary endorphins before we then feel even more sluggish. Fresh foods and fluids throughout the day will help pick us up. Plenty of fruit and veg will help with all the vitamins and minerals and additional fluids (fruit and veg contain good amounts of fluid), a multivitamin & mineral tablet won’t do any harm either!! The antioxidants included in these foods will also help reduce inflammation… another downside to a hangover.
- Dampen the inflammation… The ethanol creates inflammation in the body, if we can dampen this then we have more chance of skipping those headaches and sluggishness. As previously mentioned, the fruits and veg and multivitamin will help, but we can also look at other sources such as Omega 3, turmeric, and tart cherry, three extremely easy supplements to consume that will help.
And finally… don’t forget to enjoy yourself!! Enjoy the holidays folks!!”
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