THE BLOG
03/28/2008 02:48 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

How To Survive A Holiday Hangover

It's no secret that the holidays are a time for celebration, which always includes a lot of eating and drinking, and sometimes a lot of merriness. We are all surrounded by mass quantities of candy, baked goods, and cheesy appetizers that can leave us in a terrible food coma, but even more damaging are the colorful cocktails, giant bowls of spiked punch, and bubbly bottles of champagne. The subtitle of our book How To Eat Like A Hot Chick is Eat What You Love, Love How You Feel. And that is for a reason. We want you to celebrate with food and drink, but we know (from firsthand experience, unfortunately) that if you eat and drink everything you love, you absolutely will not love the way you feel.

Hangovers suck in general, but a holiday hangover can be even worse. We don't have time to properly recover before we have to get all dressed up (despite our new bloat) and put a smile on our face for the next holiday shindig. And it can be next to impossible to convincingly pretend to enjoy ourselves at the office party with a throbbing head, a puffy face, and blood sugar that is all out of whack. This year, we want you to clink glasses with your family, friends and co-workers, and we want you to do it painlessly. Follow our holiday hangover help, and you will be able to sip and salute and celebrate and still wake up feeling clear-headed, happy, and of course, hot!

Holiday Hangover Help #1: EAT

Sometimes we Hot Chicks think that we should starve ourselves all day in order to easily slip into that little pink party dress. But trust us, this always ends badly. In order to prevent a nasty hangover (and some seriously embarrassing moments), you absolutely must eat before you go out, at the end of the night, and maybe even have a little nibble halfway through the party, too. Eat half of a sandwich while you're curling your hair, or confidently strut straight towards the cheese and crackers when you arrive at the party. Just make sure there is at least a "mini-meal" sitting in that hot stomach of yours before you start tipping those bottoms up.

It's a good idea to have a little bite at the end of the night, too. Now, we are not giving you permission to run to the Taco Bell border at 3:00 a.m., but you should have a fun, semi-sensible midnight snack to help absorb all those martinis. (Hint: make sure your "mini meals" are more substantial than frozen yogurt and M&M's. Trust us when we say that they do not mix well with holiday cocktails.)

Holiday Hangover Help #2: HYDRATE

It is a fact that alcohol dehydrates us. When you wake up with an excruciating headache, dry mouth, wooziness, and swollen ankles, it isn't just because you chugged too many glasses of spiked eggnog, it's because your body is crying for some good, old-fashioned H2O! In order to survive a hangover this holiday season, grab an extra case of water as you toss beer bottles and margarita mix into that shopping cart. Make sure you're fully hydrated before you go out, drink a glass of water in between every pretty cocktail you throw down, and try to guzzle at least 24 ounces before your head hits the pillow. (Hint: The only time a Hot Chick should be "double fisting" is if she has a bottle of water in one hand.)

Holiday Hangover Hint #3: REALIZE

Don't forget that alcohol is a depressant! Feeling like absolute crap about ourselves and the entire universe is definitely one of the worst symptoms of a hangover. We have had an amazing time at some holiday bashes and then woken up wanting to cry for no reason. We just want to remind you to watch your alcohol intake, and if you accidentally wake up feeling disheartened despite your good time last night, don't panic! Remind yourself that it's normal and then force yourself out of bed. After the third bottle of water and some greasy eggs, you'll get that spring back in your step after all. (Hint: For many of us, the holidays can be depressing in general. If you are one of those gals who feels extra pressure and anxiety at this time of year, please don't drown your sorrows in liquor. It will only make things worse.)

Holiday Hangover Hint #4: DON'T MIX

Making a mixing mistake pretty much ensures that you'll wake up feeling like you got hit by a train. We want you to indulge in the things you love, but that does not mean that you need to drink everything. You do not need a glass of red wine, two flutes of champagne, a margarita, half of a beer and a shot of whiskey. That combo will not make for a better night, but it will for sure create a terrible tomorrow. (Trust us; we just made this mistake the other night.) Anyway, don't mix alcohol. Just don't. Pick your favorite and stick with it for the night. Have vodka seltzers at tonight's party and red wine at the one on Friday. Just like with babies and careers, we women can have it all, but probably not at the same time! This goes for your alcohol consumption, too.

This is also a good place to tell you to stop using mixers. Quit adding juice and tonic and cola to your alcohol. All this stuff does is add inches to your hips and fuel to your hangover. (Hint: It's true: "Beer before liquor, never been sicker...")

Holiday Hangover Hint #5: DON'T BINGE

We know that we told you to eat in order to prevent a hangover, but bear in mind that you should not eat everything. Alcohol lowers our inhibitions, and we not only start thinking that all of the guys at the party are cuter, but all food starts to look more appetizing, too. Somewhere in our drunken minds we think it's okay to eat the entire bowl of Chex Mix or stand at the buffet and pick at a whole cake with our fingers. As fun as this may sound, it's not a good idea. If you eat too much while you knock back those cocktails, it will only make your hangover worse. Your blood sugar will go crazy and you will wake up feeling hung-over from alcohol and from too much food. So eat at the party, but do not let your holiday tipsiness allow you to binge. Have some self-control, and you'll end the night looking and feeling way hotter. (Hint: Use your friends! Share a plate of appetizers and a piece of cake and even a cookie with your girlfriends. You'll eat half as much and it'll be way more fun.)

Holiday Hangover Hint #6: WORK IT

In order to prevent (or recover from) a hangover this holiday season, you simply must get your hot little butt off the couch. You have to exercise. Sweating out toxins and burning off calories is a great way to keep yourself feeling bright and happy as you celebrate this season. Find the time to get yourself to the gym before you go out for drinks. It will give you energy and confidence and help keep your metabolism running smoother as you pick at that spicy nut mix. And the next day, no matter how hungover you feel, get up and get back on that treadmill. A good, sweaty workout can cure a hangover better than coffee, three Advil and a B12 shot. (Hint: Stick to cardio when you're feeling hungover. You may feel a bit too weak to lift weights, but working up a sweat will help you start to feel stronger.)