The 24 -Hour Wedding Countdown

What to eat and drink before saying “I Do”

It’s wedding season, and here come the brides—44,230 of them every weekend! Whether it’s you, your best friend, or an adored daughter who is counting down to the big day, here are five easy steps to ensure that you look and feel your best in those final 24 hours—from the first toast until the final flurry of rose petals.

Bloat-proof your belly

Don’t spoil the perfect fit of your dress! Avoid anything salty—from pickles and fast food to Chinese takeout—for at least 24 hours before the ceremony. Limit carbonated beverages too, which can be salty and gassy. You don’t want to be bloated and burping.

Get lots of sleep

Forget all-night gabfests with your bridesmaids the night before. Instead, have a nice warm bath and, if possible, a gentle massage. Feeling 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).

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 have the jitters, caffeine will make them worse, plus it’s a diuretic so it’ll make you pee a lot (no easy feat in a wedding dress) and could lead to dehydration—a serious energy sapper.

Space out the alcohol

Weddings often mean a non-stop flow of celebratory champagne, wine and cocktails. But you need to be dazzling, not dim (and definitely not dehydrated, sleepless or hung over—all risks of an open bar).

Follow this guzzler guide:

  • The night before: Give yourself a two-drink limit or stick with wine spritzers and ask for more club soda than wine.
  • The wedding breakfast: Skip the mimosas and sparkle-up your orange juice with seltzer.
  • The reception toasts: Sip your champagne and don’t empty the glass. Pace yourself through to the cake-cutting and bouquet tossing.

Eat something!

There may be tons of food, but it’s easy for busy brides not to get a bite. To keep your energy up, hunger down and tum-my flat, go for the fish, chicken and salads—but have a Plan B. Ask your maid of honour to stash an energy bar or some brazil nuts in her purse. Just six nuts give you four grams of protein and some healthy fat, a combination that will keep you going far longer than you’d think.

Sign Up for Our

Enter your email address below to receive tips, articles and exclusive contests in your inbox.