Pre-game prep for those crazy tailgates
One of the most important aspects of tailgating is to drink responsibly. Often you will see people come to the tailgates unprepared and just have a beer or take a picture and the rest of the day becomes a blur. With a little preparation, you can ensure that you’ll have a great time and be able to sober up before it’s time to head home after the game.
Alcohol and food are synonymous with tailgating, and consuming them in the right order (and quantity) goes a long way in determining how you feel and how long you feel the effects of tailgating.
I won’t go too deep into the food science, but if you follow a few key points outlined below, you’re guaranteed to have a fun, enjoyable, and responsible experience while supporting your favorite team.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate – Consuming enough water every day is essential for several reasons, but most importantly, it helps regulate your body temperature and keep your organs functioning properly. Proper hydration improves sleep quality, cognition and mood. Pro tip – Alternating a serving of water between alcoholic beverages is a great way to stay hydrated.
- Choose your poison – Choosing an alcoholic drink that’s right for you will reduce the risk of getting sick or waking up hungover afterwards. You will probably also know your “limit” if you know the effects it gives you.
- Line your belly to prevent a hangover – This list is not exhaustive, but it is a good starting point. I encourage you to do some additional research if you feel you want more options.
Bananas – A quick and easy snack to have on hand to stay hydrated. They are rich in potassium, composed of almost 75% water, and contain fibers which slow down the absorption of alcohol.
Protein – Protein-rich foods are digested over a longer period of time and slow the rate at which your blood alcohol level rises. For example, a portion of chicken the size of your palm is enough. In terms of tailgate portions, a few X’s Perry Tenders are just what you’d want.
Dairy products – Milk, yogurt, and cheeses are a great way to coat your stomach, and they stack well with tailgate staples like burgers, jalapeños, and fries. The fats in dairy products are integral to reducing alcohol absorption in the stomach. Something like a Cheeseburger with Sautéed Jalapeños in Olive Oil would work well, or my Cream Cheese Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Jalapeños are ideal for situations like this.
Vegetables – Vegetables rich in water are light but pleasant to have on the stomach. Asparagus, for example, can be tossed on the grill with a little salt and a citrus glaze. It will taste good and be good for you because Asparagus has been clinically reviewed for its ability to promote liver health.
So, without stressing the science too much, a few bites of the right foods can help you enjoy a tailgate responsibly and prevent or reduce the negative side effects of alcohol. When you factor in the heat of the air temperature, you can see how quickly one would become dehydrated while enjoying the company of friends and loved ones at a tailgate.
I hope these tips help you get your money’s worth, whether at the stadium, at the bar or at home.
If you have any tips you’d like to share, let us know in the comments section.