You may have heard multiple sayings surrounding alcohol that you just accept to be truth. In reality, they’re based on misconceptions which have been normalised over time!
Have you ever come across the saying “eating’s cheating”? Or has anyone ever given you hangover advice, saying you should take a cold shower to sober up?
These may seem like sound suggestions, but take them with a grain of salt. The way to responsible drinking is to rely on the science of how alcohol affects your body, and how your body processes it.
Today we’re going to debunk some of the longstanding myths regarding alcohol and drinking. Stick around and learn more!
1. Coffee and a cold shower can help you sober up
You’ve probably tried this hack once or twice before. You stumble through the door after a night out, put a cold shower on full blast, step out and chug a mug of coffee.
The question you should ask yourself is, has it ever worked before, or is it placebo?
This method of getting cooled down and caffeinated may help to wake you up enough to function. It may even get rid of some symptoms of intoxication.
However, it won’t help you rid your system of toxins. While coffee and a cold shower may make you a little less nauseous or fatigued, there is still alcohol in your body.
It takes the liver over an hour to process one drink, metabolizing only 20 milligrams per deciliter of alcohol per hour. So, it doesn’t matter how many cups of coffee you down or how cold your shower is.
If it hasn’t been an hour since your last binge drinking session, chances are there’s nothing you can do about it but to sit and wait for your body do the work.
2. Eating’s cheating
Many have sworn by this saying in their youth. Eating before a night of drinking may be the sensible thing to do, but where’s the fun in that?
Some people have been peer pressured into going out on an empty stomach because of this old adage. So is “eating’s cheating” really true?
Technically, there is a truth to that. A full stomach means the body takes longer to start absorbing your alcohol intake.
However, it doesn’t count as cheating because eating won’t completely prevent you from getting drunk. It only delays the effect.
Also, remember that your body digests food too! Once digested, the body will start absorbing alcohol at its normal rate, getting you drunk quicker. Rather than stuffing yourself before a night out, exercise moderation with your alcohol.
3. Eating before bed can help prevent raging hangovers
Still on the subject of food preventing the effects of alcohol, eating before bed has no correlation with hangover symptoms in the morning.
It doesn’t help alleviate your hangover, and it also doesn’t speed up your metabolism. So, the next time you consider a McDonald’s before crashing into bed, maybe think twice.
Hangover food is normally fried and greasy, which may feel great to eat in the moment.
However, consuming this much grease with alcohol still in your stomach may lead to acid reflux, which will result in pain more extreme than any hangover would give you.
4. You can get drunker by mixing spirits with energy drinks
Red Bull and Monster Energy are never absent at college parties. They end up in solo cups mixed with vodka and other questionable liquors.
To the drinker, this mix can get them drunker at a faster rate. But do energy drinks actually make you drunk faster? Science says that it isn’t exactly true.
You may feel like you’re drunk when you down a Red Bull and vodka mix, but that’s not alcohol intoxication.
That’s the result of the caffeine present in energy drinks. You’re filled with extra energy, and begin to believe that you’re not as drunk as you actually are.
After a while, you’re bouncing off the walls, thinking you’re fine for another shot. So you drink more and more.
So, it’s not the energy drink mixer that gets you drunker—it’s your brain’s altered state thinking it’s okay to keep drinking when it isn’t!
5. Pace yourself and you’ll be fine to drive at the end of the night
Driving under the influence of alcohol is a punishable offense. Under no circumstances should you be operating a vehicle after you’ve had alcohol, no matter what these alcohol myths tell you.
Many are under the impression that limiting yourself to one drink an hour means you’d be safe to drive at the end of the night. But if it takes over an hour for the human body to process one drink, then your body may not be finished metabolising your first drink before you start having another.
Always follow the rule of thumb. Avoid driving when intoxicated and don’t take your chances, no matter what others tell you.
6. Dark beer has higher ABV compared to light beer
From an observational standpoint, this may seem like the conclusion that makes most sence. However, the shade of your beer has nothing to do with alcohol content.
A beer’s final colour is determined by the grains used in the ingredients. You may very well find a dark beer that is lower in ABV than a light beer, too.
7. “Beer before liquor, never been sicker. Liquor before beer, you’re in the clear”
This statement implies that the order in which you consume different kinds of alcohol dictates how drunk you’ll be at the end of the night. In truth, these things don’t matter.
The amount of intoxicated you become is solely dictated by the amount of alcohol you consume. The above statement is only slightly true in that carbonation in beer can irritate the stomach lining.
This irritation is said to make your body absorb alcohol at a higher rate; however, this has not been scientifically proven.
Find more about alcohol-drinking tips in Minuman.com Blog.