You wore the sash. And the cheap veil. Maybe even a few phallic accessories. And you drank all the drinks. Hey, what happens in Vegas—or Miami, Atlantic City, Nashville or New Orleans—should stay there. Which means a weekend of going all-out shouldn't derail your otherwise healthy existence. Nutritionist Elissa Goodman details how to recover from your bachelorette party without missing a beat.
The week before
You may have the best of intentions to return to healthy eats post-bash, but when you're exhausted from a weekend of revelry it'll be more tempting to hit the drive-thru than the kitchen. Set yourself up for success by making a trip to the grocery store pre-bash to stock up on leafy green vegetables, lean protein sources like chicken and salmon and complex carbs such as quinoa and lentils. To curb any salty cravings, suggests Goodman, pick out some nutritious packaged snack foods. Think: kale chips, sweet potato chips, seaweed snacks and popcorn.
Before you start drinking
Prior to throwing back that first group shot, Goodman recommends swallowing two capsules of activated charcoal ("It can help ease the load of alcohol on your system," she says) or three tabs of milk thistle, which is known to help regenerate liver cells.
The morning after
Reaching for that bacon-egg-and-cheese sandwich might sound like the perfect hangover cure, but Goodman has a more scientific approach. She says foods high in magnesium can relax blood vessels and help relieve that pounding headache. She advises gobbling up a bowl of oatmeal made with cashew milk and slices of banana and drinking down a glass of coconut water, which can replenish the electrolytes you lost through drinking.
The whole next day
After a weekend of cocktails, you're programmed to crave fat, says the L.A.-based pro. "When you drink, your body produces a chemical called galanin," she explains, "that flat-out promotes the need for more sugar and fat." Tackle those cravings with foods packed with healthy fats. Goodman's picks include sweet potatoes topped with grass-fed butter, avocado to slice over mixed greens, coconut oil to add to smoothies or a handful of sunflower seeds.
The rest of the week
You enjoyed every morsel of the all-you-can-eat buffet, but now you want to re-embrace veggies. Embrace organic, plant-based dishes. "It will get your organs operating at max potential," says Goodman, "which will get you back on track in no time." Sound too intense? Try simply avoiding foods with processed sugar, gluten and dairy. "Those are all inflammatory," explains Goodman. "When you cut them out for five days, you can completely rebalance your diet."