The best foods to cure your Melbourne Cup Day hangover


If you’ve woken up after celebrating in a fashion befitting of Melbourne Cup Day, chances are you’re probably not feeling your best.

In the event you’re suffering a post-party hangover, and need to find a way to ease the pain, look to replenishing lost nutrients first.

Here, FEMAIL rounds up the best foods you can eat to help settle a churning stomach, beat a blistering headache and restore energy to even the most flagging spirits.

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In the event you’re suffering a post-party hangover, and trying to find a way to ease the pain, look to replenishing lost nutrients first

In the event you’re suffering a post-party hangover, and trying to find a way to ease the pain, look to replenishing lost nutrients first

THE SCIENCE OF HANGOVERS

Before launching into how to tackle this touchy subject, it helps to understand what causes hangovers in the first place.

Symptoms can include a searing headache, nausea, sensitivity to light, aching muscles, an upset stomach and decreased motor skills.

Some, or all of these, can come about because the body’s chemistry is reacting to the toxic chemicals in alcohol.

In order to restore balance and break down toxins, the body needs to flush the system then restock it with necessary fluids and nutrients to refuel.

WATER: THE ELIXIR OF LIFE

As alcohol is a diuretic, a heavy night of drinking can lead to dehydration which in turn can cause painful headaches the following day.

While some swear by the cure of drinking water before going to sleep to help alleviate the effects, it’s also recommended drinking as much water possible as soon as you wake up to replenish lost liquid.

To help restore energy and control hydration, hit sugary sports drinks that are loaded with electrolytes. Coconut water can also help as it’s naturally high in electrolytes and minerals.

Coconut water can also help rehydrate because it’s naturally high in electrolytes and minerals

Coconut water can also help rehydrate because it’s naturally high in electrolytes and minerals

Coconut water can also help rehydrate because it’s naturally high in electrolytes and minerals

TEAS, FRUIT JUICE AND COFFEE

Before reaching for that much needed shot of caffeinated energy, try turning to teas – the herbal variety – to gently soothe an upset stomach.

Ginger tea has been shown to help reduce nausea and motion sickness, while peppermint tea can help with stomach pain.

Fructose laden fruit juice can also help kick start the recovery process, but orange juice isn’t recommended as it’s highly acidic and can irritate an already sensitive stomach. Instead opt for cranberry, pineapple or pear.

According to nutritionist Cassandra Barns , the vinegar in pickle juice can help stimulate the liver to detoxify and eliminate alcohol

According to nutritionist Cassandra Barns , the vinegar in pickle juice can help stimulate the liver to detoxify and eliminate alcohol

According to nutritionist Cassandra Barns , the vinegar in pickle juice can help stimulate the liver to detoxify and eliminate alcohol

If you’re game for a more unconventional cure, try pickle juice.  

According to nutritionist Cassandra Barns, the vinegar in pickle juice can help stimulate the liver to detoxify and eliminate alcohol.

‘When pickles ferment, they also produce a certain type of soothing bacteria to help with an irritated stomach,’ she said previously. 

HANGOVER BEATING BREAKFAST

While it might be tempting to rush out and order a huge plate of greasy food to ‘soak’ up the alcohol, conventional wisdom points to exercising a little moderation.

Choosing an egg-based breakfast can help because not only are eggs a rich source of protein, they contain amino acids cysteine and taurine – both of which can aid in helping the both deal with the effects of alcohol.

For a healthier option try poached eggs, green leafy vegetables, grilled tomatoes and wholegrain bread. The slow release carbohydrates from the whole grains and vegetables will help restore flagging energy levels over the course of the day.

Choosing an egg-based breakfast is especially important because not only are eggs a rich source of protein, they contain amino acids cysteine and taurine

Choosing an egg-based breakfast is especially important because not only are eggs a rich source of protein, they contain amino acids cysteine and taurine

Choosing an egg-based breakfast is especially important because not only are eggs a rich source of protein, they contain amino acids cysteine and taurine

Oats are packed with essential nutrients like vitamin B, calcium and magnesium and iron

Oats are packed with essential nutrients like vitamin B, calcium and magnesium and iron

Oats are packed with essential nutrients like vitamin B, calcium and magnesium and iron

If stepping out to a full breakfast feels too difficult, a hot bowl of porridge is a good alternative. Oats are packed with essential nutrients like vitamin B, calcium and magnesium and iron. Plus this superfood can help neutralise acids in the body as well as raise blood sugar levels.

In the event your go-to hangover food is soup, make it a hearty chicken noodle one.

Broth-based soups can not only help restock sodium and water levels in the body, but chicken also contains cysteine which can help restore liver function.

‘Bone broth contains lots of minerals that are naturally released from the bones during cooking – and these, together with the salt, could help to fight fatigue and boost your energy levels,’ Ms Barns said.

Broth-based soups can not only help restock sodium and water levels in the body, chicken also contains cysteine which can help restore liver function

Broth-based soups can not only help restock sodium and water levels in the body, chicken also contains cysteine which can help restore liver function

Broth-based soups can not only help restock sodium and water levels in the body, chicken also contains cysteine which can help restore liver function

FOODS YOU SHOULDN’T EAT

As mentioned earlier, your natural inclination might be to reach for the biggest, greasiest burger you can lay your hands on, and while this might satiate your hunger, it’s unlikely to help.

While eating a burger the night before can help beat a hangover – the fats can help absorb alcohol – the problem with fried food the next day is that it’s likely to irritate rather, than soothe, an unsettled stomach.

While eating a burger the night before can help beat a bad hangover, the problem with fried food the next day is that it's likely to irritate the stomach

While eating a burger the night before can help beat a bad hangover, the problem with fried food the next day is that it's likely to irritate the stomach

While eating a burger the night before can help beat a bad hangover, the problem with fried food the next day is that it’s likely to irritate the stomach

It’s also suggested to stay away from spicy foods as they can worsen dehydration and further aggravate an already unsettled gut.

Also if you’re thinking a drink the next day seems like a good idea to take the edge off, reconsider. This ‘solution’ isn’t proven and is likely to further dehydrate the body, and lead to worse hangover symptoms later on.

Although reaching for a much-needed cup of coffee is likely first thing, caffeine is also not recommended because it can dehydrate. 

But in some instances, combining coffee with over-the-counter paracetamol has proven an effective way to tackle a headache. 



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