Hang in There

Four pros offer tips for minimizing your New Year’s Day ick

December 27, 2011

Your memory’s maybe a bit fuzzy on the exact sequence of events from last New Year’s Eve. But bet you can’t forget the next morning, when you had to pay the price — and it was way higher than the credit card charge for that round of Jell-O shots. To ensure that the first day of 2012 isn’t a repeat of that head-pounding punishment, try one of these hangover helpers.

 

The Chef’s Recipe

When Dennis Marron, the executive chef at Poste (555 8th St. NW; 202-783-6060), wakes up after one too many, he makes a beeline for the fruit bowl on his kitchen counter. “The sooner you get something in your stomach, the better off you are,” he says. “Melons are good because of the high water content.” For a purely liquid breakfast to help you rehydrate from the previous night’s debauchery, he prefers coconut water or carrot juice. However, if you’re looking for something a little heartier that won’t break any of your New Year’s resolutions, Marron recommends frying up a few egg whites.

The Trainer’s Regimen

“The whole sweat it out theory isn’t physiologically true,” says Andy Gallagher, a personal trainer at Vida Fitness. But getting an endorphin rush can certainly ease the pain. For better living through body chemistry, Gallagher suggests resistance training followed by a light jog. Don’t do anything too strenuous, and make sure you drink water frequently throughout your workout since you’ll be in a severely dehydrated state. There’s one other item you should also tote along to the gym: spearmint gum. “You’ll probably need to freshen up your breath after a long night on the town,” Gallagher says.

The Doctor’s Orders

Sometimes prevention is the best cure. William Kimbrough, a physician with One Medical Group (1627 I St. NW, Ste. 800; 202-660-0015), advises tipplers to alternate between boozy beverages and non-alcoholic drinks to limit the overall amount they imbibe. And he suggests ordering cocktails with clear liquids, such as vodka, to minimize the aftereffects. “Studies show that dark liquors like rum and whiskey have more byproducts of fermentation in them,” he says. “That can contribute to hangovers.” If you wake up in the morning only to find you’ve still managed to tie one on, definitely don’t take Tylenol to clear your head. “Alcohol sets up the liver for damage,” he says. “And Tylenol can definitely hurt it.”

The Bartender’s Brew

“The fact that we haven’t discovered a hangover cure baffles me,” says Alex Strange, head bartender at Shab Row Bistro (221B N. East St., Frederick, Md.; 301-6318102) “You’d think that with all our medical advances we would have come up with something.” While scientists have been slacking, the mixologist has developed his own makeshift remedy: a liter of water, two Advils and a bottle of Pedialyte. “You’ve dehydrated yourself and assassinated a lot of nutrients,” he says. “This will help bring them back.” Try to take the combo before you hit the sack — that is, if you can remember.

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