I’m pretty much a non-drinker at this point. No alcohol = no extra pounds, bloating, and/or wrinkles. It also keeps me in the moment and able to do what I want, when I want. However, I do have a night every month or so that calls for 2 glasses of bubbly or a stressful day that calls for an extra-large glass o’ red. When those moments of drink do arise, I don’t like the idea of having to rearrange my schedule for a hangover the next morning. Here’s the nearly-perfect regimen to ward off the evil of dehydration…
1. Don’t drink too much.
It’s simple: you don’t need as much alcy to get drunk as you think. Treat each glass as a meal; drink ’til you’re “almost full” (or tipsy in this case) then stop for a minute or ten. Your metabolism will catch up, and you’ll know whether you REALLY need that next drink or not. BONUS: You save money at the bar this way!
2. After you drink, take a FULL shot of raw apple cider vinegar.
You may have to build up to this. I’ve been doing it for months, and taking a full shot still hurts. However, the vinegar detoxifies your body, and what is alcy after all? A straight up toxin. Speed along getting the bad juju out of your system.
3. Follow that with a spoonful of real, local honey.
This helps with allergies, but it also helps with flushing toxins… AND cutting through the burn of your vinegar shot!
4. Drink a glass of water or coconut water.
You’ve gotta hydrate. If you don’t follow the one glass of water per drink rule (which I recommend), you MUST have a hefty glass right after your last libation. You’ve got to start putting more water in before too much comes out!
5. Brush your teeth like mad.
NO ONE likes waking up to the taste of alcohol; it’s nauseating. However, you’re more prone to try the horribly INEFFECTIVE measure known as “hair of the dog” if you taste alcohol as soon as you open your eyes. You’ll ultimately end up MORE dehydrated if you just start drinking again, so cut off the craving at the head by removing all prior evidence of alcohol from your mouth.
You can choose here. Sometimes I use oil or a night cream, while other times I simply use a lotion, cold cream, or retinol/other anti-aging treatment. (Don’t forget to hydrate down your decolletage!) Sometimes hitting your feet and hands with a thick lotion can also really help keep the moisture where it should be: in you!
7. Head to bed with a banana and at least 16 oz. of water.
Bananas are full of potassium, so you won’t ever wake up in the middle of the night with a searing leg cramp due to dehydration ever again. (If you’re allergic or simply don’t like the yellow fruit, you can opt for coconut water!) Obviously the 16 ounces of water is meant to hydrate you, but water + bananas in conjunction = getting your digestion on the right path again.
8. SLEEP FOR AS LONG AS YOU CAN!
The more you get, the less your body will need to recover in the morning.
9. Water, electrolytes, cleansing, and moisturizing FIRST.
As soon as you open your eyes, follow this step. (If you can muster it, take another shot of vinegar and then oil pull with something like sunflower or sesame oil before any of these. Again, both of these take practice, but they are natural works-like-a-charm’ers.) At the least, you need 16 ounces of water and some form of electrolytes (banana, broth, coconut, Gatorade, etc.). Down about half of each before cleaning your teeth and face, the latter with something hydrating like jojoba oil or cold cream. The last step should be moisturizing a warm, damp face with a water-based, natural lotion.
10. Clean breakfast second.
Do not head for the grease. It DOES NOT help!!! You will feel more sick if you don’t aim for something like an egg sandwich. GRAB YOUR BREAKFAST AT HOME WHERE YOU CAN CONTROL THE INGREDIENTS! You can use oils to cook with and whole wheat and/or other complex grains for carbs. You can use local meat and cook it thoroughly, as well as drain it extensively. Make sure you include REAL fruit, but no extra sugar via juices is recommended. Other good options are yogurt (full-fat/sugar and/or Greek), lox, whole-grain waffles with PB, and local or homemade quiches. Just make sure the ingredients of any bfast made or purchased are mostly pure or local to avoid grease that will further toxify your system.
If you’re still feeling like a human garbage bag after these 10 steps, here is a list of other natural steps you should first take before popping ibuprofen or chugging a coffee:
1. Ice cold rag to the head
2. Heating pad to the stomach
3. Warm shower
5. Aloe water, milk thistle, and funny movies
If none of these work, feel free to hit up the IB, caffeine, and grease… but I can guarantee sticking to this plan will keep you in a hydrated, non-head-pounding place!