We’ve all been there – You wake up to a throbbing pain in your head, you roll over and there’s an empty wine glass next to your bed, maybe some half eaten toast if you’re lucky. You’ve had a big night.
In my experience, I usually crawl into a ball and cover myself with the doona in a vain attempt to cloak my misery. However, this doesn’t actually help very much (surprise surprise..) so after making sure my phone and bag followed me home last night my mind usually turns to food. This is my hangover breakfast recipe to cure your aching soul.
I had experienced a few (too many) mornings like this after the festive season so I have done some research and devised an Ultimate Hangover Breakfast.
Every ingredient has a specific benefit to help you overcome your hangover with grace (or best next option).
I also have some tips and tricks on what to eat before you start drinking, what NOT TO EAT AT ALL and what to consume the next day to try dull the pain that too many red wines can bring.
- Water: duh – Water can alleviate the symptoms of drinking because alcohol can cause dehydration. Alcohol inhibits a hormone called anti-diuretic hormone (ADH). This hormone usually hangs out in your body all the time and keeps you from peeing out all of the water you drink so it has time to absorb it. When you drink alcohol, ADH becomes low and you pee more. Broken your seal, anybody?
- Coconut water: People swear by this stuff and I understand why. I now keep a bottle of real coconut water in the fridge if I plan on going out for the night. It is instantly refreshing and has the extra benefits of anti-oxidants and electrolytes, specifically potassium. They are all key components of any hangover cure.
- Ginger or peppermint tea: These soothing brew’s can reduce nausea, motion sickness and are very gentle on the stomach.
- Fruit juice (But not OJ): The fructose in sweet fruit juice can give the body some instant energy and may even help boost your metabolism to get rid of some of those gnarly alcohol toxins. OJ has a high level of acidity which may irritate a sensitive stomach.
- Spinach: These green little leaves are loaded with potassium which is often depleted due to alcohol’s diuretic affect (lots of peeing, remember). Maybe that’s why Popeye loved his spinach.. too much Sailor Jerry’s? If you’re not feeling a salad first thing after a big night out you can sauté some spinach with garlic or chuck it in a smoothie.
- Eggs: Eggs have been the star of hungover brunches for a long time, and there’s a reason why. Let’s talk science. Eggs are chock full of hardworking amino acids like taurine and cycteine which help boost liver function, breaks down actealdehyde – the yucky headache causing chemical that’s left behind once your liver has broken down ethanol. Eggs also contain protein which is the body’s building block so they assist in repairing that liver and kidney damage the next day.
- Miso Soup: Sushi is not the first thing a hungover mind craves however if you can get your hands on a miso soup or some miso paste, you’ll be on the road to recovery a lot quicker. Miso is a great remedy because the broth rehydrates and restocks the body’s sodium levels whilst the fermented miso can help aid digestion. I have instant miso soup sachets at home and also use the miso paste to marinate veggies sometimes, it’s delish!
- Vegemite/Honey/Peanut butter on toast: Feeling very fragile, petal? If all you can muster is some toast, pick a wholesome spread like vegemite, honey or peanut butter. Vegemite is rich in Vitamin B and folic acid which are depleted by drinking. Honey has some fructose to help energise the body burn of the alcohol quicker and peanut butter has protein and monounsaturated fats. The toast is a simple, bland way to give yourself some energy on a sensitive stomach.
- Oats: Feeling something sweet? A warm bowl of oats/oatmeal with a drizzle of honey and cinnamon in the morning can stuff you full of essential nutrients like B vitamins, magnesium, calcium & iron. Oats also assist in neutralizing acids in the body and raise your blood sugar levels which gives you some hangover energy!
- Tomatoes: Ever wonder how the Bloody Mary became a thing? Tomatoes contain lycopene which is an antioxidant that reduces inflammation in the body. Drinking causes inflammation of ALL THE BODY PARTS. Tomatoes also contain fructose and vitamin C to give the liver a healthy boost. Save the Bloody Mary for the afternoon or another time.
- Avocado: Like eggs, avocados contain protein which assist in the full blown repair mode your body has gone into. Avocado may be an easier option than eggs to digest for someone with a very nauseous stomach so some avocado on a nice wholegrain toast can do you wonders. Oh, the anti-oxidants help
- Sunglasses, berocca and maybe a panadol or two.
What to avoid:
Unfortunately, greasy fatty foods aren’t going to help you recover any faster. The fat can actually irritate your poor nauseous stomach so stay away from your local fried haven. There is some good news however, you should eat greasy, fatty foods before drinking to prevent a hangover 😉 Chowing down on a huge burger or curly fries can help insulate the body, preventing the absorption of alcohol.
No energy.. late night.. pounding head. Coffee?! No. Coffee is also a diuretic to that double ristretto with soy milk on the side will only dehydrate you further. Coffee is also a vasoconstrictor (causes blood cells to swell and vessels to narrow) so a morning espresso will only make that pounding headache more pounding. Water, coconut water, caffeine free tea or some juice is a better option.
The breakfast contains grilled tomatoes, avocado, eggs, miso sautéed spinach, avocado and eggs on toast. I had a peppermint tea on the side and some coconut water was
guzzled consumed prior.
With all that said, people have their own special hangover cures, so go on, share your secrets below!