Those nights of having fun with friends and family are some of the most memorable experiences. Relaxing with the best drinks and good company can make a night you won’t forget. However, a bottle of wine, delicious sangria and elegant cocktails are only one part of the equation.
Unfortunately, the morning after the big event isn’t nearly as enjoyable. Hangovers can quickly disrupt your day and hurt your productivity. The best way to cure a hangover is to prevent them from occurring in the first place, but sometimes it can be challenging to tell when one will appear. In this guide, you’ll find tips for how to not get hungover and what to do if you need to cure one.
What Causes a Hangover?
Hangovers happen after you drink too much alcohol. The more alcohol you consume, the more likely you are to feel the symptoms of a hangover later. Hangovers begin to show when your blood alcohol content lowers significantly or is close to zero. Typically, people feel the effects of a hangover in the morning after drinking. You may feel symptoms like:
- Rapid heartbeat
- Lowered concentration
- Decreased or poor sleep
- Light or sound sensitivity
- Depression, irritability or anxiety
- Stomach pain, nausea or vomiting
- Dry mouth or excessive thirst
- Increased blood pressure
- Weakness and fatigue
- Muscle aches
Several related factors contribute to hangover symptoms. Alcohol can cause dehydration by accelerating the loss of fluids, causing symptoms like thirst, headaches and fatigue the following day. Alcohol also increases acid release, leading to stomach discomfort and nausea. Additionally, people experience inflammation in their liver, brain, pancreas and other organs when drinking alcohol, leading to body aches, discomfort and similar symptoms.
How to Prevent a Hangover
You don’t need to remove alcohol from your lifestyle to prevent hangovers. There are many safe ways to drink with friends and family so you can enjoy every occasion to its fullest and still feel great the next day. Check out these tips for actions you can take before, during and after drinking to reduce or avoid hangover symptoms the following morning.
Drink in Moderation
The more alcohol you drink, the more likely you’ll experience a hangover the next day. The amount of alcohol you can safely consume will be different from everyone else. The amount of food you eat, whether you drink water and how much sleep you have can drastically affect the number of beverages you can consume. Monitoring the drinks you’re consuming and being aware of how they affect you are key for hangover prevention. A good rule of thumb is to consume no more than one beverage every hour. It’s important to have appropriate beverage sizes when adhering to this rule. A single drink could be:
- 1.5 ounces of a distilled liquor or spirit with 40% alcohol by volume (ABV)
- 5 ounces of a wine with 12% ABV
- 12 ounces of beer with 5% ABV
- 8 ounces of malt liquor with 7% ABV
Avoid Drinks With Congeners
Congeners give a distinctive character to alcoholic beverages and are a byproduct of the fermentation process as the yeast converts sugars. Congeners are toxic chemicals, and the amount present can vary by drink. Avoiding beverages with high levels of congeners can help prevent a hangover from occurring. Tequila, cognac and whiskey are often high in congeners, while rum, gin and vodka have lower levels. Generally, colored drinks will contain more congeners than clear alcohols.
Drink Plenty of Water
As we mentioned earlier, dehydration is a cause of hangover symptoms. People tend to make more trips to the bathroom when drinking alcohol, creating fluid loss and leading to fatigue, headaches and thirst the next day. Keeping water on hand can relieve some of these problems and help you maintain adequate hydration levels through the night. Consider swapping some glasses for water or dedicating the last few hours of your occasion to only drinking water.
Measure and Count Your Drinks
Similar to our first tip, you can save yourself a headache by holding yourself accountable for the amount of alcohol you drink. It’s common for people to over-pour alcohol when crafting drinks at home, which can quickly lead to harmful effects. Be sure to use the proper measuring devices and skip the guesswork. Furthermore, keep a tracker of the number of beverages you consume. Whether you download an app tracker or keep a physical note somewhere in your home, make a tally every time you pour another glass to ensure you stay within your safe limits.
Additionally, there are many ways to enjoy a flavorful drink without consuming high amounts of alcohol. For instance, adding water to your beverage can keep you hydrated, and crafting mocktails can keep you in the festive spirit while skipping the elements that can impact the next day. This way, you can skip the measuring altogether while enjoying the refreshing taste of something fun.
Eat Good Food Before Consuming Alcohol
Eating before drinking is one of the best tips for preventing a hangover. Consuming food can slow alcohol absorption in the bloodstream, keeping your blood alcohol concentration lower and reducing hangover effects. The best foods to eat before drinking are high in protein, electrolytes and nutrients. Try preparing one of these foods or a combination of them before your next event:
- Chia pudding
- Greek yogurt
- Sweet potatoes
- Trail mix
Refrain from snacking on chips, crackers and similar salty foods before and while drinking. These foods can worsen bloating and irritation. Additionally, avoid refined carbs like sodas, white bread, sweet treats and pasta. These foods can lead to overeating later in the night and cause your blood sugar levels to fluctuate.
Find Other Ways to Relieve Stress Beforehand
Many people find themselves drinking to excess when they want to relieve stress. Although enjoying time with friends and family can be an excellent stress reliever, there are other steps you can take to prevent over-drinking while enjoying your time together. For instance, going to the gym is an opportunity to push your limits and work out tension from the days or weeks behind you. Other hobbies like painting, writing or going on a walk can also help you create a more positive outlook for your night. Any activity that makes you feel practical, joyful and restorative is suitable, so try different things to find what works best for you.
Be Sure to Get Enough Sleep
At the end of the night, the last step is to crawl into bed and get a restful night of sleep. Poor sleep won’t cause most hangover symptoms, but it can hinder your productivity and make you feel more tired and irritable the next morning.
Try to maintain your typical sleep schedule as much as possible. For instance, if you generally go to bed around 11 p.m., try your best to be in your room and comfortable at that same time. If you can’t stick to your regular bedtime routine, allow yourself to sleep in more than normal the next day. A night of good sleep will do wonders for your body after drinking.
You can also use some other tips to stay asleep or prepare for the following day. It may help to use an eye mask or pull your curtains over your window to give you the most uninterrupted sleep cycle. Additionally, place a glass of water and any supplements to help you the following day by your bed so you can reach for them when you wake up.
How to Stop a Hangover That Already Started
If the night got away from you and you’re feeling those terrible effects in the morning, finding a hangover cure is the best way to make the most of your day. There is no magic cure for a hangover, but you can use plenty of tricks to feel better in the meantime. Here are some ways you can stop a hangover that’s already started:
Start the Day With Tea or Coffee
Caffeine is a stimulant and can reduce grogginess, empowering you to boost productivity and find the energy to move throughout the day. Avoid adding too many sugary creamers to your drink to prevent upsetting your stomach. Ginger tea is an excellent choice if you’re facing an upset stomach because it can calm your body and relieve nausea. Coffee and tea likely won’t cure the other hangover symptoms you’re experiencing, but they can give you the boost your morning needs.
Take a Pain Reliever
Ibuprofen and aspirin are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that can ease headaches and body aches. Taking one of these pain relievers with foods could help reduce or eliminate some of the more painful symptoms you’re experiencing. However, these medications can irritate your stomach. Additionally, avoiding Tylenol or Excedrin is critical if there is alcohol in your system. These medications contain acetaminophen, which can have toxic effects on your liver when combined with alcohol.
Consume Some Quality Food
Some foods can quickly alleviate hangover symptoms. It’s important to fill your body with quality foods that make you feel good and provide the energy you need. Start your day with a bountiful breakfast of eggs, avocados, leafy greens, bananas or a bagel. These foods will be light on your stomach while replenishing the essential nutrients your body needs after a night of drinking. Avoid greasy food, which can heighten discomfort in your stomach.
Drink Plenty of Water
Fluids will be one of your greatest assets the morning after drinking. If you didn’t have any water throughout the night, your body could be suffering from water lost during bathroom trips. Your dehydration may be severe if you’re experiencing vomiting, sweating or diarrhea. If it’s challenging to keep anything down, sipping water can help. Carry a glass or bottle with you throughout the morning and take sips whenever you can.
Have Zinc and Vitamins Ready
One study assessed the diet of those drinking excessively and found a correlation between hangovers and the food participants ate before and after drinking. The study determined that people with more zinc and vitamin B in their diets had less severe hangover symptoms. Vitamin C can also relieve your symptoms. Although you can purchase many of these vitamins as chewable tablets or pills, you can also find them in many foods. Leafy greens, chickpeas and broccoli are excellent sources of vitamin B, and tomatoes, white potatoes, strawberries and bell peppers are excellent sources of vitamin C. You can find zinc in red meats, poultry, nuts and beans.
Boost Your Electrolytes
Electrolytes balance your body and are essential for many regular functions. Your electrolytes suffer when you lose fluids from alcohol. Some foods and drinks can boost your electrolytes to help you feel better and more productive. Avocados, bananas, kale and spinach contain electrolytes, and drinks like Gatorade and Pedialyte can give you the boost you need. Consider stocking up on these foods and drinks before your next night out so you can rest assured that your hangover cure is only steps away.
Make a Refreshing Blended Beverage
If you have irritation in your stomach, try to make a refreshing smoothie. Liquids can empty the stomach faster than solid foods and might feel easier to consume. They can also help increase your blood sugar and to reduce hangover symptoms. Ingredients like dairy milk, protein powder, greek yogurt, chickpeas and fortified soy milk have the nutrients your body needs to recover, so stock up on the ones you like for your next night out.
If the thought of food makes your stomach turn, you can rely on some of your favorite fruits and veggies to make your hangover cure. Try this blended beverage recipe the morning after drinking:
- Greek yogurt
- Oats or nuts
- Pear juice
You don’t need precise measurements to create the perfect beverage. Choose the ingredients you most enjoy and add as much as you’d like. Keep in mind that adding more juice, milk or water will make the drink smoother and could be easier to consume. Add more nuts or oats if you want to have a crunch in your drink to substitute solid breakfast foods.
Find the Drinks for Your Next Party at Marketview Liquor
Marketview Liquor is ready to supply your next get-together. We make finding the best wine and spirits for any occasion easy. From your favorite reds and crisp whites to note-worthy spirits, you can find everything you need and more to create a memorable night with your friends and family.
With us, you can find delicious recipes and the alcohol you need to impress all your guests. We make it easy to shop your all-time favorites or find new ones by delivering your bottles directly to your door. You can also find some of the best deals for incredible bottles, such as free shipping on select wines and bottles for less than $10. For larger gatherings, you can rely on our case discounts to supply each guest with delicious drinks all night long.
The fear of a hangover shouldn’t stop you from having fun. With the right drinking strategy and the necessary foods and vitamins, you can prevent a hangover from happening so you can enjoy your night with the ones you love most. Browse our vast wine selection or choose from our collection of spirits to find everything you need for your next party.