I’ve been a professional food writer for seven years and have been working at Serious Eats (a publication that specializes in cooking and eating) for well over a year. If you need to know anything about me, it’s that I almost always have indigestion. I can’t help overeating. It’s my job. It probably doesn’t help that I have a pretty typical Jewish digestive system and the mild IBS that goes along with it.
But I have found a way to combat the postprandial nausea of which I have grown so accustomed: Gin Gins. They are my trade secret for overindulgence, whether it be from a fancy multicourse meal or a morning of hungover fried-food feasting. It’s well-known that ginger has a lot of anti-nausea benefits, but carrying a hunk of ginger around is ill-advised, and regular ginger-ale is just a joke in terms of actual ginger content. Gin Gins are really powerful and actually taste like and contain ginger (up to 30 percent!). And I eat them all the time.
Like that time our office ordered Mile End delivery (I got the Ruth Wilensky with seared beef salami and mustard on a pressed onion roll). I also got a latke because their latkes are basically fried potato hamburgers and resistance is futile. Then my boss brought over mozzarella from Di Palo’s, still warm and milky; and about two pounds of prosciutto. There was also the office holiday party at Insa, where we ate unfathomable amounts of Korean barbecue before hitting the karaoke room. After a horrific rendition of “Lose Yourself” where I bounced and danced to compensate for my terrible rapping skills, I needed quite a few Gin Gins. I’ve brought them to work, and now my colleagues eat them (or request some of mine) after overeating.
While there are several kinds of Gin Gins, I recommend the “Super Strength” variety, which start out sort of hard but then you can chew and chew and chew, like a Tootsie Roll. If that, for some reason, sounds unappealing, the Double Strength Hard Candies are also effective. Sure, you can buy Gin Gins in a regular pack or at your local grocery store, but I recommend ordering them by the pound. If you’re anything like me, you’re going to need them.
Writer and activist Janet Mock loves Gin Gins, too, except she prefers the chewy variety: “I travel a lot and get some indigestion so I always, just next to my lip balm, will have three of these in my bag. It gives me a sugar fix and it helps keep my belly flat and digest that food with all the benefits of ginger.”
In our guide to the best IBS remedies, gastroenterologist Dr. Michelle Cohen recommends peppermint pills like IBgard: “In terms of OTC options for pain and bloating, there are certain herbs and food as medicine that can be very helpful. So in my practice, for a lot of pain and bloating, I recommend that people use peppermint, fennel, and ginger in tea form, pill form, oils, or food form.”
Writer Caroline Bankoff started popping Queasy Drops (which are meant for pregnant women experiencing morning sickness) after a particularly rough hangover. She was amazed by how well they worked: “By the time I was back under a blanket, my nausea had completely disappeared. Sure, I was still exhausted and headachy and acutely aware of every single one of my flaws, but I had regained the stomach and desire for a cheeseburger, which, once consumed, put me on the road to recovery.”
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