Appeasing the angry drunk stomach: grease wins

It’s 2 a.m., following a night of drinking and your stomach is growling. It cannot be tamed unless it is fed. Chances are, the next move you’ll make is a step through LaBamba’s door or a phone call to either Chubby’s Pizza or Jimmy John’s.

Many students crave some type of food after a night of drinking.

“I almost always get Chubby’s cheese sticks,” Matt Carlstrom, a social science major and president of Sigma Nu, said. “If I don’t get Chubby’s, then I usually don’t get anything.”

Alicia Wroblewski, a junior marketing major and Alpha Phi president, said, contrary to her sorority sisters’ choices of LaBamba’s, she usually craves pizza or Jimmy John’s after a night of drinking.

“A lot of the girls in my sorority like LaBamba’s, but I usually crave cheese pizza,” Wroblewski said. “If I don’t get pizza though, we will come back to our apartment and eat animal crackers and peanut butter.”

Leon Hall, Chubby’s pizza store manager, said seven out of 10 students ordering after midnight are drunk and 70 percent of their orders are for cheese sticks.

“The majority of our business comes in from 10 p.m. to close, both on weekdays and weekends,” Hall said. “We have to bring in extra drivers though for the weekend because we just get popped during those peak hours.”

Hall said they deliver to and take orders from people under several conditions.

“It’s crazy out there, to tell you the truth,” Hall said. “You name it, and it has probably happened. I’ve delivered to people who are naked, reckless and even throwing up.”

The food of choice may vary from person to person, but the hunger is inevitable.

Though the stomach may beg to differ, this hunger after a night of drinking is simply a sensation caused by the inability to feel full, Traci Frieling, Eastern’s nutrition education coordinator, said.

“Initially alcohol works as an appetite suppressant, but after a couple of drinks it becomes an appetite stimulant,” Frieling said. “Along with your motor skills being affected, your appetite becomes affected as well; you lose sensation to how hungry you are because (the alcohol) suppresses the feelings of being full.”

Frieling said a student may feel the need to eat because alcohol becomes a stimulant and causes dehydration.

“You have that feeling that you are hungry because alcohol dehydrates you, and you have very little liquid left in your stomach,” Frieling said. “Even though you have had enough calories for the day, and you do not need to eat, the dehydration and the stimulant in alcohol makes you feel hungry.”

One option in avoiding the unnecessary calories and taming the wild sounds of hunger is to consume water or a non-caffeinated, non-alcoholic drink before, during and after drinking alcohol, as well as eating a balanced meal before going out, Frieling said.

Most students, Frieling said, do not eat a well-balanced meal before drinking because they feel the calories from their alcohol will account for the meal they have missed.

“Typically you want to make sure you have something in your stomach before you start drinking; something that will stay in your stomach longer and takes a little longer to digest,” Frieling said. “Fats, proteins and complex carbohydrates are all good things to eat before drinking, and they will help prevent alcohol poisoning, too.”

If unnecessary eating during the same night of drinking is not a problem, but eating too much the next day is, Frieling said pizza, sandwiches, fruits and vegetables are all good selections.

“The main thing is keeping your food balanced and moderated,” Frieling said. “If you are overeating after a night of drinking, the calories and fat can really add up fast.”