Come New Years Eve, a lot of people will be drinking entirely too much. (And hey, no judgement if that's you.) But waking up with a raging hangover doesn't feel like the freshest way to start a new year. (In particular a new year following a year many people can't wait to move past.) Here, experts share the hangover cures that people swear by in countries all around the world. Maybe one of these will work for you? If not, there's always January 2 to start hitting those resolutions hard.
The Japanese believe that turmeric enhances liver function, and thus it's often used in hangover cures. “After a late night of karaoke in Tokyo, I turned to 'golden milk' tea the next morning, swirled with turmeric, cinnamon, black pepper, honey, and milk,” says travel expert Anne Roderique-Jones.
In Canada, people eat poutine after a night of heavy drinking. "Poutine is a dish made with french fries and drizzled with gravy and cheese curds. This greasy meal is believed to help absorb alcohol," says international etiquette expert Sharon Schweitzer of Protocol & Etiquette Worldwide.
In Croatia, burek is believed to slow alcohol absorption. "This flaky pastry contains cheese and meat, and the abundance of lipids are thought to ease hangovers," Schweitzer says.
In Thailand, hangover sufferers fix a plate of pad kee mao, nicknamed drunken noodles. "This dish contains rice noodles, soy sauce, garlic, meat, bean sprouts, and seafood," Schweitzer says.
In Norway, lutefisk is considered the best hangover cure. Schweitzer says, "This dish is made of dried fish and lye, and the excess fish oil is believed to soak up any residual alcohol in the stomach."
In Russia, people prefer to skip the food and sweat it out a sauna. "A good steam to remove the alcohol and other toxins consumed," says Schweitzer.
Schweitzer says that fillets of preserved herring, wrapped around gherkins or onions, are served as part of Katerfrühstück for a hangover breakfast in Germany.
8. U.S.A. (New Orleans)
Alternatively, down in New Orleans, they opt for “eye-openers” like the silky brandy milk punch or effervescent Champagne cocktail. “They provide zero health benefits, but instant relief. Additionally, they stretch the fun out just a little bit longer, and that’s what matters most down in the Big Easy,” says Roderique-Jones.
In Spain, it's very common to have some preventive hangover care in the form of tapas. “Tapas is the name we give to the free bits of food we get when we purchase an alcoholic beverage,” says Beatriz Alegría, a corporate communications specialist specializing in cultural insights. “The mythological historic origins of the tapas tradition date back to the king Alfonso X El Sabio, who received an alcoholic beverage with a slice of Spanish ham to cover it (tapar in Spanish) and avoid pesky flies getting into the drink. The book Don Quijote de la Mancha does include a reference to the custom of eating and drinking at the same time,” says Alegria. Regardless of its origins, in Spain, food and alcohol usually go hand in hand. Once the damage is done, in Spain it's very common to eat a platter of fried eggs with French fries to fight hangovers. “Many people believe greasy food will help them overcome the ordeal. I personally stick to water for the rest of the day!” says Alegria.
Bryan Schneider, the bar director of the Quality Branded group has a specific go-to hangover cure, the Cura cocktail, which is served at Quality Eats. "My friend Thiago Ferraz de Camargo from Yaguara Cachaça once told me of an old Brazilian remedy that mixed Cachaça with crushed garlic. The concoction is was supposed to be a cure-all for anything from the common cold to a nasty hangover. I was inspired by the story to create a version of my own for the brunch menu at Quality Eats. We call it Cura, which means cure in Portuguese."
Cruda means raw in English, and the Mexican hangover cure for that feeling is chilaquiles says Maritza Briceño, owner of El Zarape Mexican Eatery. Chilaquiles are savory red or green spicy salsa over fried, crispy corn tortilla chips, and then topped with diced onions and queso fresco, sour cream, fried eggs or chicken or steak. “The savory salsa on chilaquiles have enough heat to make you sweat out toxins. The salt in queso fresco helps the dehydration aspect of a hangover, while the cool, creamy effect of sour cream or Mexican crema coat the stomach to balance out the spiciness. Additionally, if paired with a michelada [Mexican bloody mary-like drink made with beer], containing tomato juice, which is known to boost liver function and are also rich in electrolyte sodium and potassium, you’re good to go! We’ll give the benefit of the doubt to the ethanol found in beer which supposedly cancels out the abundance of methanol from last night’s drinking," says Briceño.
A spot of tea can cure a lot that ails you, and that includes a hangover. In India, they brew a tea that includes turmeric. “Turmeric tea is an anti inflammatory,” says The Watergate Hotel executive chef Michael Santoro.
“In London, it is said that chip shops offer the best ratio of greasy fat and omega-3 protein to aid in digestion of alcohol. My favorites reside in the Redbridge areas,” says Santoro.
“In Korea, to cure the soju and mokuli hangovers, ginger-ade was the only, and I mean only thing that worked,” says Santoro.
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