Let’s be honest, guys, if our true love’s got us the “magic cure” for hangovers as a gift this holiday season, we’d be stoked. All of those cups of cheer can add up, even if most of our drinking with friends will be taking place on video calls this holiday season.
The good news: it can actually be easy to avoid a hangover while still enjoying some festive cheer. Heed these five tips to help prevent a hangover, and you can get your buzz on without paying for it with a pounding headache and pukey feeling the next day.
1. Chase every drink with a glass of water.
Not a sip or two of water after every drink. Not a glass of water for every three drinks. One bottle of beer. One glass of water. One scotch on the rocks. One glass of water, you get the picture. Water helps your body process and eliminate alcohol, so removing it from your system ASAP with plenty of water will result in a milder, or even non-existent, hangover.
2. Drink plenty of water after drinking
Dehydration isn’t considered the main cause of hangovers, but it contributes to symptoms such as thirst, headache, fatigue, and dry mouth. Okay, if this is starting to sound a lot like a hangover, you get the point. Drink water during and after a few highballs.
3. Drink clear liquor on the rocks
Adding ice to drinks dilutes them, cutting the alcohol content (by volume) and reducing the frequency of refills. Many people like to mix booze with sugary things like pop or juice, which makes hangovers worse. So drinking your liquor straight up can actually help you with hangover prevention when you moderate it. It also turns out that dark-coloured liquors such as whiskey, brandy, and red wine may cause worse hangovers than vodka, gin, and other clear liquors. Unfortunately, no matter what the colour your drink is, you’re going to feel like crap the next day if you drink too much of it.
4. Wine and dine on protein, not sugar
A full stomach slows down the rate at which alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream. High-protein foods such as eggs, nuts, and lean meats take longer to digest, and so they give your body more time to break down alcohol.
Booze is full of sugar, especially when mixes such as pop and juice are involved (as mentioned above), and this sugar is thought to be part of the reason we get hangovers in the first place. That’s why shortbread cookies and milk chocolate Santas are not ideal foods to eat while drinking.
5. Get your Zs
Alcohol can impair both sleep quality and duration, and staying up late while drinking can disrupt your entire sleep schedule. Although poor sleep doesn’t cause hangover symptoms, it contributes to fatigue and irritability. If possible, try to stop drinking at least 4 hours before bedtime to get a decent sleep and feel good the next day.
There you have it, folks. It’s easy enough to get your buzz on and come out of it feeling great. The key to preventing “Rudolph Nose” is simply moderation.
Do you have any hangover prevention tips that work well for you? We’d love to hear them in the comments below.
This article was originally published on December 14, 2016.
The team behind Don’t Change Much has a confession to make: We started playing holiday music in the office in October!
Seeing Canadian men live healthier lives makes us merry and bright, after all, and like so many of these guys we can’t wait to celebrate the holidays with family and friends. On that note, we’d like to wish you and yours a very happy — and of course a very healthy — festive season!
Then there’s the fact that some of the season’s most popular tunes were practically made for our staff members. Here, they reveal the songs that suit them best:
“Walking in a winter wonderland, or anywhere for that matter, is a big part of what Don’t Change Much is all about. The more you walk, the healthier you’ll be! I fit in some extra walking by going for strolls on my lunch break and breathing in the fresh air. It really energizes me!”
Silent Night: Timothy, Digital Media Manager
“Sleep in heavenly peace? Sounds good to me! There’s nothing I like better than a solid night’s rest. In fact, getting enough sleep is good for everyone because it keeps our hearts healthy, reduces stress, and even makes us smarter. To sleep well, I always make sure to block all the light sources in my bedroom, drop the thermostat, and leave my smartphone in the kitchen.”
Peace on Earth: Cassondra, National Partnership Manager
“The holidays can be really hectic, so I always try to take a step back and live in peace, like the song says, even if it’s just for a few minutes. I stop everything and take five super-deep breaths and long exhales. Then I can stay in the holiday spirit!”
“From chestnuts roasting on an open fire to cayenne-spiked stove-roasted almonds, I much prefer nuts to greasy, salty potato chips. It goes to show how easy it is to swap tasty, nutritious snack foods for unhealthy ones.”
“Having a cup of cheer is a holiday tradition, but I’ve learned never to overdo it — two cups is plenty — and to have a tall glass of water before and after my jingle juice holiday punch.”
“Like Frosty, I love to mix up my exercise to keep it fresh and fun. Thumping (or snowshoeing) over fields of snow, dancing, running here and there all around the square, it’s all good! Personally, I love outdoor skating, tobogganing and making Finnish snow angels in winter.”
Santa Baby: Sarah, Corporate Partnerships Manager
“I love this adorable tune, and I admire the singer who made it famous. Eartha Kitt’s work with underprivileged teens showed the world how exercise and staying active can make a difference in anyone’s life.”
“I’ve learned that having a night out with the merry gentlemen in my life — my buddies — is good for my overall health. We go to movies, to the pub, to the gym, bowling, anywhere we get to hang out and enjoy ourselves. It’s good for me, and it’s good for my friends too.”
“I always try to have a positive attitude. It makes life look brighter and promising. With positive thinking, it’s easier to achieve success, have better health, improve relationships, and enjoy life overall. By letting your heart be light, your troubles really will be out of sight.”
Let It Snow: Ryan, Solution Architect
“If the snow doesn’t show signs of stopping, and I’ve brought some corn for popping, I don’t douse the snack with salt. Too much salt contributes to high blood pressure, after all, and that can lead to heart attacks, stroke and other health problems. Instead, I like to put sesame oil or spicy paprika on there. Let it snow!”