By: Teresa Peterson

There are a lot of amazing events coming our way this Spring. Starting with next week’s Lipstick on your Collar 2 (Are you the lucky lady going with TEEJ?!) to Snowball 2014 to Zeds Dead at Red Rocks . Once you have tickets and transportation plans set you may be wondering how to avoid feeling like death the next day.

You could go Ancient Roman style and eat an entire deep fried canary the next morning (bones and all), or maybe you will go with Greek tradition and attempt to cure your hangover with a real breakfast of champions:  sheep lungs and two owl eggs. All kidding aside though, there are a ton of myths about what will save you from the killer headache and serious nausea due after an epic evening. Here’s some information that will actually help.

First, it’s worth noting that there is no single magic cure for a hangover beyond not getting one in the first place. Moderation ya’ll and good ol’ H2O. Second, it’s important to realize the idea that hangovers aren’t a big deal is false—they are—you feel like shit after a night of heavy drinking because your body is communicating to you that you’ve just wrecked your set, namely your central nervous system (the communication center for all parts of your body starting with your brain and spinal cord). Damaging your central nervous system is what actually causes the headache, dizziness, nausea and weakened immune system post party.

 But let’s be honest, sometimes you get wild and when it comes to hangover cures there are things that hurt and things that help.

 Hangover Truths

1. Women get hit harder by the hangover.

When men and women drink the same amount of alcohol the woman feels it more. This is because men have a higher percentage of water in their bodies (helps dilute alcohol). Since women have a lower percentage of water in their bodies it builds up more quickly in the bloodstream leading to a faster drunk and a harder hangover.

2. There is truth to the lightweight theory.

Drinking any amount of alcohol can trigger the symptoms of a hangover, it just depends on your body. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately there is no one size fits all hangover or hangover cure.

3. The rhyme is a lie.

We’ve all heard the saying, said it, and perhaps had a debate on the order it’s supposed to go but the phrase “liquor before beer and you’re in the clear” is false. No matter what. In terms of the hangover it’s about the amount of booze you drink , not the order you drink it in. Remember, 1 beer (12 oz), one wine (5 oz), and a 1.5 ounce “shot” are the same amount of booze and that’s your unit of measurement if you’re attempting to steer clear from the splitting headache after prom.

4. Pain meds before bed is a bad idea.

“Over-the-counter pain killers peak in about four hours, so a bedtime dose won’t help by the time you wake up” says Varnada Karriem-Norwood, MD of WebMD. Also, steer clear of acetaminophen (Tylenol) after a night of drinking, it’s hard on your liver especially mixed with alcohol. The day after calls for ibuprofen (Advil) over acetaminophen.

5. Drunchies won’t help your hangover, especially not bread and pasta.

Gorging yourself on the special from the nearest 24 hour Denver diner after an evening out isn’t going to help your hangover. It will only satisfy the drunk munchies. Truth is, if you’re looking for food to help you fight off the morning headache you need to eat something fatty before your first Dale’s Pale Ale or whatever it is you’re drinking.

6. Passing out isn’t sleeping well.

Falling asleep after heavy drinking means you aren’t spending quality time in your REM cycles and when you go to bed intoxicated the booze in your bloodstream can even wake you from your slumber. Basically, you are especially tired during your hangover because you didn’t really get any sleep the night before, your body just shut down after the surprise poison party.

7. Bloody’s and Mimosas don’t actually help.

Drinking alcohol the morning after a night out doesn’t  make your hangover better. It just postpones the hangover symptoms. It’s cool if you want to do it like that once in a while, just try not to confuse prolonging the party with curing the hangover.

The Real Remedies

1.Water,  water, water.

Drink water. Drinking water or nonalcoholic beverages between drinks can help you keep hydrated, which helps cut down the overall amount of booze you consume, which leads to less severe hangovers.

2. More than one? Choose wisely.

According to WebMD, the gentlest alcoholic beverages are beer and clear liquors like vodka and gin. While malt liquors and whiskey tend to be the culprit of worse hangovers.

3. Eat before you drink.

As I mentioned before, eating pasta and bread before bed will not save your head. If you’re looking for food to save you, it has to be in your stomach before you start to drink. Go for something fatty, maybe steak or pizza before you head out.

4. Best thing to do before bed to save your head.

Again, drink water before you go to sleep. Alcohol acts as a diuretic so you are especially dehydrated by the time you turn in for the night.

5. Coffee + Electrolytes.

Coffee is great, but not a hangover cure. Unfortunately it isn’t going to help your headache, in fact anything with caffeine may hurt your path to recovery the next day since it leads to further dehydration.  I am including this tip in the “real remedies” though because I love my coffee, and when I’m hungover I will still drink it. The most important thing to remember is to pair your caffeine with water and drinks that have electrolytes to keep you hydrated.

6. They’ve got the magic.

By now you get it, hydration is super important which is why I remind you that in order to successfully hydrate our bodies need electrolytes. Electrolytes are ions in the body which aide in moving fluid through cells. That’s why sports drinks have sodium and potassium, two of the human body’s major electrolytes that we lose when we sweat. You also lose electrolytes once you’ve broken the seal during and after a night of binge drinking. So be sure to pair your water with healthy sports drinks (ones without a ton of high fructose corn syrup) or something like coconut water which has the perfect balance of sodium and potassium for optimal hydration.

Have fun at the show, be safe, and hydrate. And as always keep living #TheGoodLife.

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