Whether you’re looking to prevent a hangover, get drunk faster, or improve your performance in bed, it seems there are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to the world’s most used drug — alcohol. No matter how it is consumed, alcohol is alcohol, and it will have a significant toll on your health for better, or for worse. So before you throw back a few beers, sip on some margaritas, or take a couple of shots, Hannah Hart for Mental Floss, has set the record straight, and debunked the 29 most common myths about alcohol that could actually be killing your buzz.
To keep it short and simple, Medical Daily has narrowed it down to the top 10 alcohol myths you probably still believe under the influence.
1. Beer before liquor will not make you sicker.
The shots of tequila, vodka, or whiskey before beer to avoid feeling ill was not a wise idea to begin with. The order in which you drink booze doesn’t matter. Varying beverages won’t make you drunk; it’s all about how much you drink.
2. One does not simply 'break the seal.'
Into your third drink, chances are you’ve patted yourself on the back for being able to drink without going to the bathroom. However, after the last sip of the third drink, you realize you have “to go” and have crossed the point of no return because you broke the seal. The truth is alcohol is a diuretic, which means it will make you have to pee a lot. Breaking the seal has nothing to do with it.
3. Beer doesn’t (directly) make you gain weight.
The term “beer belly” is used loosely, but drinking beer does not actually make you gain weight. Hart references a study which found women who have a drink or two each day are less prone to weight gain than those who don’t drink, or sometimes binge drink. This points to a difference in the way alcohol is metabolized in the bodies of women who drink in moderation.
4. Alcohol cannot make you hallucinate.
It is believed drinking Absinthe will make you hallucinate, but the reality is this drink just has a high alcohol content, no hallucinogen included. This myth has historical origins that have been dispelled. Early Absinthe-related hospitalizations were actually due to alcohol, and not hallucinations.
5. Alcohol doesn’t improve performance in bed.
While alcohol can lower your inhibitions and impair your judgment, making you feel like Casanova, it does not mean you will be a love-making machine. Alcohol may actually make it more of a challenge to become aroused and reach orgasm because a lot of alcohol dulls body sensations. In men, alcohol affects blood flow to the penis, which limits their abilities.
6. Energy drinks with alcohol don’t make you drunker.
People mix energy drinks with alcohol to prevent getting drunk, but the truth it this combination just energizes you. You may feel less intoxicated than you actually are, which leads to more drinking and poor-decision making. Drink energy drinks and alcohol separately.
7. Alcohol is not truth serum.
Do not “blame it on the alcohol,” as there is no scientific evidence that shows alcohol causes you to tell the truth. Some experts do believe there is a connection between drunk claims and sober thoughts. Until there’s scientific data, the jury is still out on this one.
8. Eating before drinking doesn’t keep you sober.
It’s a popular misconception eating a big meal before drinking keeps you sober. Eating does help with the absorption of alcohol in your body, but it delays rather than restricts it from going into the bloodstream. Due to the slow absorption, eating a big meal before drinking does help reduce the severity of a next day hangover.
9. Acetaminophen before bed won’t prevent a hangover.
A rule of thumb is any acetaminophen medicine should not be mixed with alcohol. If you need to take something, go with ibuprofen. This still won’t necessarily prevent your hangover.
10. Coffee won’t cure your hangover.
Unfortunately for caffeine lovers, coffee will not cure your hangover. Coffee like alcohol, is a diuretic that only further serves to dehydrate your body. Avoid the caffeine and sip on water instead.
These alcohol myths may be killing your buzz, so avoid them, have a good time, and drink responsibly.