The Monday after the Super Bowl, some people will wake up with a hangover and regret for eating buckets of high-calorie foods.
That’s because aside from football, food is a star player as 79 percent of watchers plan to buy food and drinks while glued to their screens Feb. 3, the National Retail Federation reports. Americans are expected to down more than 1.3 billion chicken wings, most dipping them in Ranch, according to the National Chicken Council. They’ll likely pair that with a few slices of pizza and wash it all down with beer, according to survey data cited by Pizza Hut.
So, after what the U.S. Department of Agriculture once called the second biggest day for eating in America, Monday is a time to detox.
Here’s what nutrition experts recommend a day after overeating and drinking:
Get rid of leftovers
Those who hosted a Super Bowl party (as about 44 million people do) should send leftovers home with guests, registered dietician and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics Julie Stefanski told USA TODAY.
“Don’t let one day of enjoyment turn into three (or more) days of overindulging,” Stefanski said.
Take time to eat a healthy breakfast
Monday after game day isn’t the day to skip breakfast. Go for something hearty: Eggs, which contain vitamin D, are a good source of protein. A whole grain carbohydrate like a whole grain bread or muffin, healthy source of fat like avocado or nuts, vegetables (maybe in an omelet) and fruit could all be part of the mix, Dr. Donald Hensrud, Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program and editor of the Mayo Clinic Diet, tells USA TODAY.
If you’re worried about having little time before your morning commute (hypothetically, say you oversleep), prepare overnight oats or chia pudding before the game, Stefanski said. Topping that with some fruit in the morning for additional fiber, taste and vitamins is enough to kickstart your day of detox, she said.
Coffee or juice?
First, drink water. Lots of it. Hydration is key to recovering from a night of overindulging. Avoid citrus juices like orange juice, Hensrud said, because the acid could irritate stomachs. He said simple coffee drinks without too much sugar and cream are OK to provide an energy boost, but might not be best for everyone because of heartburn.
Have soup for lunch
Go for a brothy vegetable soup for lunch, Stefanski recommends. This will also help your digestive system recover from all of that buffalo sauce, she said.
“The fluid and sodium can help rehydrate and combat fatigue caused by dehydration,” she said.
Say yes to whole veggies and fruits
Incorporate vegetables in the cruciferous family, including broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and cabbage, into your day, Stefanski said, as they will support a natural detox. Antioxidants, like those found in strawberries, also help repair damage from alcoholic drinks, she said.
“Alcohol is a stressor, especially for our liver. As we break alcohol down, along with the other food we’ve eaten, it’s important to eat whole foods, like fruits and vegetables, which naturally help our body process the excess waste and chemicals our bodies don’t need.”
Pro tip for planners
Reading this ahead of the game? Experts say have a plan for how much alcohol you want to consume during Super Bowl festivities. Also, eat a balanced meal and drink plenty of water earlier in the day. Lastly, alternate drinks with water throughout the night. This all will help avoid that dreaded hangover.
Ashley May, USA TODAY
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