Ugh. Not only may you have had a bit too much to eat over the holidays, but come New Year’s Eve, it’s not unusual to overdo the drinking a bit as well.

In today’s blog, we want to share a few of our tips for hangover prevention, along with five of our top detox drink recipes for New Year’s Day, just in case you wake up feeling, um, not so great the morning after.

FIRST, A COUPLE FACTS:

  • The majority of alcoholic drinks have a lot of sugar and empty calories, often more than the dessert you turn down. This can interfere with blood sugar control, contributing to spiked insulin levels and increased sugar cravings.
  • Having a drink or two before a meal can stimulate you to eat more. Researchers speculate that alcohol increases the pleasure of eating.
  • The amount of congeners in alcohol is said to be one of the main contributors of symptoms of a hangover. Congener refers to the impurities that are produced during fermentation of alcohol which are added to enhance the taste, aroma and color of alcoholic beverages. Higher amounts of congeners are found in red wine, champagne and bourbon. White wine has a lesser amount than red wine; vodka and gin have the lowest concentration.
  • Alcohol can cause dehydration. That’s because ethanol (alcohol) blocks the secretion of antidiuretic hormone (ADH) by the pituitary gland. Without it, the kidneys send water straight to the bladder instead of absorbing it back into the body. Along with water goes a bunch of electrolytes, necessary for proper bodily function. This leads to dehydration, which in turn leads to headaches, fatigue, dry mouth, and dizziness (from lack of electrolytes potassium and sodium).

STRATEGIES FOR SMART DRINKING:
Want to indulge a bit without the afteraffects? Try these tips on for size tonight!

  • Drink plenty of water to help you stay hydrated.
  • Choose a long and skinny glass over a wide one. Studies at Cornell have shown that people are more likely to pour 30% more liquid into a wider glass.
  • Avoid drinking on an empty stomach. Food helps to slow the absorption of the alcohol.
  • Drink slowly and alternate each beverage with water or seltzer. This allows you to have something in your hand while spacing out your alcohol intake.
  • Mix alcohol with water, ice, club soda or seltzer. Most mixers, from juice, soda, and tonic to diet soda and sweet and sour mix all have some form of sugar or artificial sweetener, as well as a bunch of other additives.
  • Add lemon or lime to your drink. Though acidic, lemons and limes actually creates an alkaline environment in your body, helping to diminish the acid nature of the alcohol. Lemons and limes also help improve digestion, which can have the added benefit if you are eating out on New Years.
  • Drink two large glasses of water immediately before bed. Even better, add a pinch of sea salt to your water or drink a glass of coconut water for added electrolytes.
  • Muster up some magnesium and vitamin C. Magnesium and Vitamin C both support the alcohol dehydrogenase enzyme that breaks down alcohol and eliminates it from the body. If you have some in your vitamin cabinet, take up to 250mg of magnesium and 500-1,000mg of vitamin C before bed.

holiday hangoverOH NO – I WOKE UP AND STILL FEEL CRAPPY!
If your hangover prevention methods fail, here are four detox drinks (plus one bonus idea) packed with electrolytes, soothing liquids, and certain herbs that can get you back on track and feeling great in no time:

Upgraded Bone Broth
12 ounces bone broth, heated (homemade broth is ideal but if you don’t have any on hand, use boxed organic chicken broth)
1 tablespoon coconut butter/manna
5 fresh mint leaves
1-2 inch fresh slice ginger (peeled)
1 thick slice lemon

Melt the coconut butter into the warm broth. Add ginger, lemon, and mint. Let steep for 5 minutes. Drink up (we do not remove the ginger, etc. but drink while it’s still in the cup).

Lemon and Ginger Tea
1 inch piece fresh ginger root
20 ounces boiling water
1/2 lemon

Peel and grate the ginger root. Cover with the boiling water. Juice the lemon and add the juice of half the lemon and leave to cool. Put in the fridge to chill or drink warm.

Ginger Greens Smoothie
1 cup water (or 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup coconut water)
1 cup greens (Romaine, spinach)
1 green apple
¼ cup parsley
½ cucumber
1 stalk celery
Juice from one lemon
1-2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger

Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender for at least 30 -45 seconds.

Antioxidant Cranapple Smoothie
1/3 cup unsweetened cranberry juice
1 cup water
1 green organic apple
1/3 cup frozen cherries (or berries of your choice)
1 overflowing cup Romaine lettuce
2 celery stalks, chopped
2″ piece of raw beet

Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender for at least 30-45 seconds.

Bottled drink options:

  • Kombucha. A powerhouse of probiotics, B vitamins, liver supporting detoxifiers and a laundry list of other nutrients, this is a great choice if you like the tangy taste. Look for bottles of kombucha at health food stores. Be sure to choose flavors that have 2 grams of sugar or less per serving.
  • Kevita. Read all about this amazing drink HERE.

Whatever you wind up doing on this last night of the year (whether it’s relaxing at home or enjoying time out with friends or family), we wish you a very happy and healthy new year!

2015 happy new year

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