Breaking the myths about alcohol

Tomorrow is the biggest day of Autonomy week at UON. For students this day is a chance to relax, enjoy a break from study and have a few drinks. Last year at this time I posted some resources for responsible drinking so this year I thought I might correct a few assumptions people make about alcohol and drinking behaviour:

  1. Mixing alcohol with energy drinks will increase the effects of alcohol –  FALSE, the caffeine in the energy drinks masks the sedative effect of alcohol that tells you when to stop drinking so it will delay you feeling the high not enhance the effects of alcohol.
  2. Beer before liquor, never been sicker; liquor before beer, you’re in the clear – FALSE, it’s the amount you drink not the order you consume it in. Drinking too quickly will make you sick so pace yourself.
  3. Darker drinks are always healthier – FALSE, whilst they can have more antioxidants they can also contribute to a worse handover as a result of the fermentation process.
  4. Dark beer is always higher in alcohol content than lighter coloured beer – FALSE, don’t just rely on the colour of your beer to judge how many standard drinks you are having. Ask the bar man or read the label.
  5. Vomiting will help you sober up and prevents hangovers – FALSE, alcohol absorption starts immediately upon consumption so purging will not reduce your blood alcohol level by much.
  6. Eating before bed will reduce your hangover – FALSE, it may cause acid reflux but it wont reduce the chance of a hangover. Eating before you start drinking may slow the alcohol absorption process.
  7. Coffee and a cold shower will sober you up – FALSE, it may wake you up a little but it won’t speed up the processing of alcohol in your body. Time is the only cure.

So if you’re planning your day tomorrow keep these in mind and stay safe!


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