Best cure for a hangover is prevention. And next, OJ?

I was never really a party animal, but in my early 20s, I would fall into the same trap with every high-powered business trip. When we visited that temporary staffing company in Dallas, I overindulged on black martinis and was oh-so-thankful for the noon start time of the meeting. In New York for the billion-dollar hospital deal, I remember dimly sleeping a few hours after a bottle of amazing French white wine and a few pints of Guinness. In San Diego, it was Scotch; in Cleveland, margaritas. Every time I promised to never drink so much again.

The best cure for a hangover? Don’t drink too much to begin with.

Now I’m 32, and a mama. I’m over all that. Right? Umm, not so much. Last week I was in New York for a staff meeting and my boss took us out for Korean barbecue Friday night. I drank Asahi, and lots of creamy sweet sake. Next it was a rooftop bar and Courvoisier (hey, I don’t get out much) and the ill-fated bottle of Patron tequila that seemed like such a good idea at the time.

My flight was at 6 a.m. the next morning. No. Oh, no.

The morning after is vivid, probably because I’ve never felt so awful in this millennium. And I gave birth twice since Y2K, let’s remember.

I searched my memory banks for hangover cures as I wandered the Laguardia concourse (searching for a place where I couldn’t smell those awful Nathan’s hot dogs, who eats hot dogs for breakfast?) and came up with three ideas: water; vitamin C; and exercise. I walked back and forth from gate to drinking fountain, looking for orange juice and coming up empty but for the endless lines at Starbucks and the aforementioned Nathan’s.

It wasn’t until Minneapolis that I could get my hands on a drink fortified with a sufficient amount of Vitamin C to make it worth the airport overpricing. And it was a good one, an Odwalla Strawberry C Monster. 1000% of my daily RDA. Hurray!

By the time I reached Portland four hours later, I was feeling mostly human, and patting myself on the back for my hangover cure skillz (while at the same time, kicking myself for having tried to reclaim my misguided youth). I did lots of internet diagnosing and it appears as though my instincts were correct; exercise (to get the blood flowing and help your body rid itself of toxins), Vitamin C (for your poor liver), and water (re-hydration, and isn’t water the cure for everything?) are oft-quoted remedies for a hangover. Sleep, green tea, and Vitamin B are also mentioned frequently.

My favorite new ideas, though, were bananas, honey, almonds and peanut butter. Next time I’m making myself one heck of a yummy smoothie.

No wait. There won’t be a next time!

Author by Sarah Gilbert