What to Eat and Drink the Day Before A Big Event

Summer means parties! Whether it's a wedding, a reunion, or a big night-out, here are five easy steps to ensure you'll look and feel your best in your party duds.

1. Bloat-proof your belly. Don't spoil the perfect fit of your perfect outfit! Avoid anything salty -- from pickles to Chinese takeout -- for at least 24 hours before party time. Limit carbonated beverages, too, which can add sodium and make you feel gassy. You don't want that!

2. Bring on the sleep. Forget the last-minute running around the night before. Instead, have a nice warm bath and, if possible, a gentle massage. Kinda hungry? Have some chamomile tea (mildly sedating) with a drizzle of honey (makes you less alert) and a banana (two sleep inducers and a muscle relaxant).

3. Create a caffeine-free zone. If you need wake-up coffee in the morning, fine. But then stop. Stock up on iced herbal teas, fruit juices, and bottled water. If you've got jitters, caffeine will make them worse. Coffee's a diuretic, so it'll make you pee a lot and could lead to dehydration -- a serious energy sapper.

4. Space out the alcohol. Summer celebrations often mean a nonstop flow of champagne, wine, and cocktails. But you want to be dazzling, not dim (and definitely not dehydrated, sleepless, or hung over -- all risks of an open bar). So...

  • The night before: Give yourself a two-drink limit. Or stick with wine spritzers with tons of ice.
  • At breakfast: Skip the mimosas, and sparkle up your OJ with a splash of seltzer.
  • For toasts: Sip your champagne, don't drain the glass. Pace yourself so you don't miss a minute of the fun.

5. Eat something! There may be tons of party eats, but it may be tough to get a healthy bite. To keep your energy up, hunger down, and tummy flat, go for the fish, chicken, and salads -- but have a plan B: Stash an energy bar or some Brazil nuts in your purse. Just six nuts give you 4 grams of protein and some healthy fat, a combo that will keep you going.