Hangovers are the worst. That nasty combo of headache, nausea and gut-pain can cost you precious hours of your life. While there are certainly preventative measures you can take to reduce the likelihood of a hangover (headache medication, food, lots of water before bed, etc.), inevitably you’re going to get stuck with a dirty hangover that you need to crush before it kills your day. Here are 11 awesome hangover cures that you can turn to when you need to ease the pain.
Ginger is an all-purpose digestive aid. You can eat it with sushi, drink some ginger tea or mix ginger juice with water for a nausea-reducing elixir that’ll balance your gastric fluids and calm your system. This powerful antioxidant and anticoagulant can work wonders, but don’t consume fresh ginger on an empty stomach. Mix it up with something else.
Honey is a great antioxidant that’s loaded with fructose and glucose. In Poland, people mix honey in with pickle juice for a hydrating, salty hangover-recovery treat. If the idea of honey pickle juice sounds foul to you, just take a couple table spoons of the magic bee sauce and enjoy the fresh coat of healing goodness.
9. Prickly Pear
For desert drunks, the prickly pear is a solid morning option that’ll help take the edge off the hurt. The extract from the prickly pear cactus can help reduce nausea, loss of appetite and dry mouth. You can find prickly pear extract in a bunch of different dietary supplements.
Yep, eggs. Eggs have cysteine in ‘em. Cysteine is an awesome amino acid that breaks down acetaldehyde, a toxin that’s a byproduct of the oxidation of ethanol. Acetaldehyde causes hangovers and eggs break down the acetaldehyde. So get over the fact that you don’t want breakfast and scramble that hangover out of your system.
7. Coca Cola
Oh the sweet, sweet nectar of Coca Cola can do wonders for a messed up belly. Some say that Coca Cola was originally invented as a hangover cure. I don’t know about all that, but whether you’ve eaten a big meal or you need to turn down the volume down in your stomach, a cold Coke just feels good.
6. Greasy Diner Breakfast
Whether you’re pounding pancakes at IHOP, feasting on French toast at Norm’s or plowing through Moons Over My Hammy at Denny’s, greasy-ass diner food will help you booze-coated belly correct itself. Greasy food sticks to the stomach wall and help slow down the process of alcohol absorption. That’s not to say that you won’t feel like trash afterward, but it’ll be a different kind of trash – a much more manageable form of discomfort. If you have the chance to close the night out with some greasy food, that’s a solid hangover prevention method, but if you miss the prevention window, reach for some bacon in the morning.
5. Gatorade + Banana
Electrolytes. You need ‘em, man. When you’re recovering from a night of drunken excess, you’re bound to end up dehydrated. Drinking lots of water helps, yes, but a steady stream of electrolytes will hydrate you more quickly. Your hung-over body also needs an influx of Vitamin B and potassium. Drinking alcohol drains your levels of Vitamins B6 and B12. Bananas will calm your gut-hurt and expedite the metabolism of alcohol.
4. Bloody Mary
If you’re head is pounding and your stomach is sloshed with whatever god-awful combo of drinks you consumed last night, drinking more sounds like the last thing you wanna do. But more booze can actually help you right the ship. A nice breakfast cocktail like a Bloody Mary can serve the dual purpose of a breakfast and hangover remedy. This is a great option if food consumption is totally out of the question, and the tomato juice will help you metabolize alcohol more quickly.
Vietnamese rice noodles with broth and beef (or tripe or chicken) will hydrate you and fill your gut with a nice layer of nutrition, exfoliation and toxin-fighting spices. Don’t go too crazy with the hot sauce though. Under normal circumstances, unreasonable amounts of Sriracha in your Pho would be a great idea, but when you’re dealing with a tender tummy, you gotta keep it mellow. Add some lime, basil, sweet Hoison sauce, cilantro, onions and bean sprouts, and go to town with a soup spoon and chopsticks in hand.
2. Pad Thai
More rice noodle love here. Pad Thai will fill that void in your stomach with a tender helping of noodles, eggs, tamarind juice and some light protein like shrimp, chicken or tofu. I don’t know the science behind it, but it works like a charm.
1. Matzo Ball Soup
The medicinal healing powers of the matzo ball have been well documented throughout history. Known as Jewish penicillin, matzo ball soup can kill a hangover, eliminate pink eye and in some cases, even cure cancer. Embrace the power of the matzo. It’s the most comfortable comfort food ever invented.