Natural Hangover Cures

Happy New Year! If you’re like me you are celebrating the new while getting rid of the old. If you end up having a little too much fun at your party, this morning will not be a happy one. Just in case, I’ve compiled a few natural ways to get rid of your hangover.

Photo by Álvaro Canivell via Wikimedia Commons

What is a hangover, anyway? Our blood sugar takes a nose dive, our bodies are reeling from the chemicals and toxins in the alcohol, and we are dehydrated, leaving you with a nasty headache, nausea, and stomach issues. Fatigue from your body trying to remove all the chemicals and toxins that have flooded your system make you tired, too.

Over-the-counter remedies can help, but they have the potential to do internal damage. Aspirin is a blood thinner; combining aspirin and alcohol could cause clotting issues if you cut yourself (i.e., if you are drunk and clumsy, this option is DEFINITELY not for you!). Acetaminophen can cause liver damage; taking some when your liver is already taxed isn’t the wisest choice. Ibuprofen can cause stomach bleeding, especially when your tummy is already on the sensitive side. Instead of popping pills and causing more harm, try one of these solutions.

Avoid coffee: Yes, you want it because you’re tired, but coffee dehydrates you even more and is counterproductive to curing your hangover.

Photo by Robert & Mihaela Vicol at PublicPhoto.org.

Bananas: They replace the potassium you pee’d out while drinking. Try a banana milkshake sweetened with honey to help get rid of your headache too.

Carbs: Clear liquids are easy on your stomach, as are easily digested foods like plain toast, rice, and clear soup.

Dram Bitters: This hangover tonic from Foodtrainers is an all-natural additive for your tea, juice. or water.

Eboost Shot: Created by a NYC restauranteur, bar owner, and publisher and recommended by Well+Good NYC, Eboost Shots is all natural and packed with vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, and antioxidants to get you energized and feeling good the morning after.

Ginger: Helps cure nausea. If you just can’t get up, drink some warm ginger ale. If you can get out of bed long enough to brew it, make Ginger Tea. The ginger will help your belly and the honey and oj will help replace some of the sugars you’ve lost.

Photo by Scott Bauer, USDA ARS, via Wikimedia Commons

Honey: Using honey instead of sugar helps ward off headaches. Honey contains fructose, which stops some of the absorption of last night’s alcohol. While it might sound like a bad idea to keep the alcohol in your system, when the level of alcohol changes slowly you can avoid a headache. Try a Ginger Tea or Hot Toddy to take advantage of honey’s benefits.

Ice: Use it to relieve headaches by placing it on your forehead. Make a compress by putting crushed ice in a bag or wrapping crushed ice in a towel. A washcloth dipped in cold water also works.

Juice: This naturally sweet stuff helps replace sugar you’ve lost, but if you’re drinking it straight, stay away from the more acidic juices, like orange juice. Apple juice and tomato juice work well.

Mustard: By increasing your blood flow, mustard gets more oxygen to your organs, rids them of waste, and supplies healthy, clean blood. Since the skin is an important organ when it comes to detoxifying, take a mustard bath with Kalahari Detox Mustard Bath. Don’t want to pay to detox? Make your own with the recipe below.

Peppermint: This herb relaxes your intestines by removing gas from the digestive system. You can either drink a peppermint tea, like the one below, or chew peppermint leaves.

Reflexology and massage:

  • Who doesn’t love a foot rub? Practice a little reflexology to banish the aches and pains from the previous night and help detoxify your liver. The area of your feet connected with your liver is on the outer edge of the right foot, halfway between the middle of your foot and your little toe. If you notice a crunchy texture, it is because there is some liver congestion.
Photo by Stacy Simone via Wikimedia Commons
  • Pull your hair into clumps (think a bunch of little pony tails) so your scalp is stimulated, which brings blood to your scalp and helps relieve headaches.

Sports drinks: Drinking sports drinks, like Gatorade, will help replace fluids, electrolytes, and sugars, like glucose.

Tiger’s Balm: This Asian topical ointment wasn’t developed for hangovers, but it’s like it was. Rub some on the back of your neck and your temples and wait for a few minutes until your headache disappears (expect a little eye stinging).

Wasabi: Over 1/3 of our bodies’ toxins are released through the skin. Amp up that number and help your hangover by sweating it out in a wasabi bath. TLC Cooking recommends Body System’s Wasabai Hangover Bath Treatment, which increases blood flow through your organs. Faster moving blood means more oxygen to your cells, which helps clear out waste like toxins from your celebrating.

Photo by Robert & Mihaela Vicol at PublicPhoto.org.

Water: You’re dehydrated, water hydrates. It’s that simple. Having a glass spiked with a dash of salt and pepper before bed and immediately upon waking will help ease the pain too. Or, add lemon to your water to balance your pH, help your digestive system, boost your metabolism, and oust toxins.

Wheatgrass: End your night with a glass of wheatgrass juice. This super food does almost everything. It aids in cleansing, hydrating, and energizing your cells; deodorizes; heals wounds; maintains a proper pH balance; healing intestines; and delivering antioxidants and enzymes. If you wake up and think you need it, have another glass in the am for more detoxing and energy.

Yoga: Squeeze the toxins out of your organs with a twisting yoga pose, like The Seated Twist.

  • Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you.
  • Bend your left knee, cross your left leg over the right leg, and put your left foot on the floor on the outside of your right knee.
  • Turn your torso to the left, so you are twisting in the opposite direction of the lower half of your body.
  • Place your right arm between your left knee and torso. Gently push against your knee/thigh to deepen the stretch.
  • Breath deeply while holding for 30 seconds.
  • Switch sides and repeat.

Be proactive the night before:

  • Drink water before before, during, and after drinking to keep headaches at bay.
  • Drink 1 drink per hour.
  • Sleep! Waking up after too few hours can lead to feeling like crap.
  • Try Pepto-Bismol or an antacid to hep get your belly back in order.
  • Take a multivitamin with Vitamin B.

Recipes

Ginger Tea

Ingredients

10-12 slices of fresh ginger root

4 cups of water

juice from 1 orange

juice from 1/2 lemon

1/2 cup of honey

Instructions

Add the ginger root slices to the water and boil for 10 minutes. Then strain the mixture and add the juices and honey. Mix and consume. (Recipe from Discovery Health)

Hot Toddy (virgin) 

Ingredients

1 cup of water

Honey to taste

Lemon juice to taste

Instructions

Boil the water. Then mix in the honey and lemon juice and enjoy! (Recipe from Discovery Health)

Bloody Mary (virgin)

Ingredients

1 glass of tomato juice

Cayenne pepper, sugar, and lime to taste

Instructions

Mix all ingredients and consume. (Recipe from TLC Cooking)

Mustard Bath

Ingredients

2 Tbsp of pure mustard powder

A warm bath

Instructions

Mix the mustard powder into warm, running bath water. Soak for 20 minutes, dry off, and take a nap while the mustard gets to work. (Recipe from TLC Cooking)

Peppermint Tea

Ingredients

1 cup of boiling water

1-2 tsp of dried peppermint

Instructions

Add the peppermint to the boiling water and let it seep for 15 minutes. Strain the tea and drink it. (Recipe from Health911)

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