I realize Thanksgiving was almost a full week ago, but I’m still in full-on recovery mode. Everyone knows a good streak of Thanksgiving-level eating stretches all the way through Black Friday and into the weekend. After all, those leftovers aren’t going to devour themselves! Anyway, after an accomplished 4+ days of pigging out, I usually feel pretty sluggish and ashamed (also proud! But also, there is some shame).
Wondering how to get back on track, or at least wean your body off the idea of getting stuffed with gravy and butter every second of the day? I have a couple secret weapons and tricks up my sleeve that I use to help me (and my poor, poor digestive system) feel better in no time. That photo above is a snapshot of my desk on the first day back to work after my large weekend. My living area basically looked like the beverage aisle at Whole Foods.
1. Coconut Water
Taste the tropics, y’all! This stuff is so great for refreshment and rehydration! It has just as much potassium as bananas plus tons of important electrolytes. You can basically think of it as nature’s gatorade. I first gave coconut water my official ES endorsement back in January 2012 and this miracle drink retains my loyalty to this day. My favorite brands are Zico (try the pineapple flavor!) and O.N.E.
Oh my dear, sweet kombucha! This fermented tea drink might sound funky, but just give it a try. It will help you balance your pH, cleanse out toxins and impurities, and really move your digestion along. Plus kombucha has trace amounts of alcohol! So it’s not like you’re completely depriving yourself, just trick yourself into thinking it’s a health cocktail or something. If you’re freaked out by the idea of fermented tea, try a bottle of GT Dave’s Synergy, which comes in delightful juice-blended flavors like guava, gingerade, and my personal fave, trilogy.
3. Raw juices and smoothies
Speaking of juice… JUICE! It’s great! I’m not talking about a plastic bottle of sugary juice from concentrate or a smoothie from a mall chain made with froyo, fruit syrups and fake colors. I mean the real deal. Here in Austin I’m completely obsessed with local favorite Juiceland, but you can easily make your own fruity elixirs at home. Blend together a ton of antioxidant-packed vegetables and fruits, add some ice, and call it a meal. I don’t believe in extreme juice cleanses or having a smoothie for every meal, but when you’re looking to balance out the bod and get some extra vitamins and minerals in there, a produce-packed juice or smoothie is a great way to go.
4. Bai Antioxidant Drinks
These are a new discovery of mine and a new fave. Bai drinks are tasty and refreshing, kind of like a juice, but with virtually no calories and tons of antioxidants. What’s their secret? Bai is sweetened with organic stevia (which is calorie-less and completely natural because it’s derived from a herb, unlike scary chemical sweeteners) and infused with coffeefruit, a flavorful superfood (it’s actually a berry-esque casing around the coffeebean we know and love) with tons of free-radical fighting antioxidants! Bai has lots of fun, island-y flavors to choose from; try Sumatra Dragonfruit or Ipanema Pomegranate.
Let’s cut to the chase. After a huge meal and lots of wine, the best way to rehydrate and refresh yourself is with pure, crisp water. I know I always feel extremely dehydrated the day after Thanksgiving (or any other major eating holiday, aka any day with a football game or any Saturday… you get the idea) and while guzzling all four of my recommendations above will help you get over the post-holiday hump, there’s just no replacement for a classic glass o’ agua. Make sure you drink at least half your body weight in ounces on the day after your feeding frenzy to help get yourself reenergized.