Will Mixing Completely different Kinds of Alcohol Give You a Hangover?


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Beer earlier than liquor, by no means been sicker; liquor earlier than beer, you’re within the clear. 

Wager you’ve heard this sing-songy adage earlier than. If not, there’s an honest probability you’ve been instructed—and even absolutely imagine—that mixing various kinds of alcohol in any sequence is a surefire technique to really feel lower than stellar (learn: like full rubbish) the subsequent day. However is there *actually* any fact to this?

To search out out, with certainty, if mixing various kinds of alcohol is that a lot worse than sticking to the identical sort (and equal serving dimension), we requested Brooklyn–primarily based dietitian Maddie Pasquariello, MS, RD, to interrupt issues down for us.

How did the adverse connotation of blending various kinds of alcohol start?

In accordance with Pasquariello, many claims about consuming booze may be linked to cultural and societal norms… and never all of them are primarily based in dietary science.

“Many assumed details about alcohol consumption are handed down primarily by our social teams and media messaging, as we develop up and work out {our relationships} with alcohol,” Pasquariello says. “They’re normally primarily based round anecdotal, communal constructs that serve a social goal.” But when they’re not fully truthful, why have they got longevity?

“Regardless of not being backed by scientific analysis, the rationale these claims would possibly stick round is partially resulting from our quest to forestall or reduce the results of a hangover the subsequent day,” Pasquariello continues. Is smart; in spite of everything, most of us don’t wish to check the boundaries if nausea, throbbing complications, dehydration, and the like could also be extra more likely to wreak havoc after imbibing. (That’s, when now we have extra strong and sound judgment earlier than alcohol’s results begin to kick in and we throw warning to the wind.)

As well as, the social facet of consuming may also enable sure habits and rituals to proliferate. “For example, the ideas of ‘beginning the evening with a shot’ and ‘ending the evening with a beer’ have grown more and more frequent,” Pasquariello says.

Is mixing various kinds of alcohol as dangerous as we’re led to imagine?

In a single phrase: no. “What is going to most have an effect on your hangover is the full quantity of alcohol consumed,” Pasquariello says. With that mentioned, there are a couple of nuances the dietitian takes care to level out.

Complete quantity of alcohol consumed

Once more, the quantity of alcohol you drink would be the greatest figuring out issue dictating how first rate (or disastrous) you’ll really feel. On this level, Pasquariello shares a couple of FYIs about alcohol serving sizes, which range in response to your drink(s) of alternative. First, she reminds us that customary serving sizes of the most typical alcoholic drinks are as follows:

  • Beer: 12 ounces
  • Wine: 5 ounces
  • Distilled spirits: 1.5 ounces

“Once we speak about whole quantity or whole amount of alcohol, it is vital to remember the place the idea of a ‘customary drink’ got here from, since that is normally how we measure consumption or report our consuming habits to a well being skilled,” says Pasquariello. She explains that these measures had been really decided by the beverage business for standardization and regulatory functions. “Ultimately, this methodology of measuring alcohol consumption was co-opted by well being organizations to higher quantify alcohol consumption and perceive well being tendencies from a medical perspective.”

This little bit of context apart, Pasquariello reiterates that “the full amount of alcohol you drink is the principle issue that may affect how strongly you are feeling the results of alcohol, [including] how hungover you’re, but additionally how alcohol impacts you through the evening of consuming, the way it impacts your sleep, and so forth.” However there’s extra that elements into the equation.

Timing of consumption

Let’s now circle again to the idea of serving sizes. “If we evaluate one standard-size drink of some various kinds of alcohol, the full quantity of alcohol they comprise is about the identical as a result of total proportion of alcohol discovered within the liquid,” Pasquariello says. “However what differs is the time it takes you to devour them.” That is one other key issue that may affect how potent the results of alcohol may be—each as you imbibe and on the subsequent day.

“As quickly because the alcohol hits your system, it begins to be absorbed into the bloodstream,” Pasquariello continues. “As such, you may really feel intoxicated extra shortly for those who devour a shot in a few seconds in comparison with consuming a beer over the course of half-hour.” Primarily, downing a number of photographs inside a couple of minutes may also yield extra intense results than consuming one shot earlier than mixing issues up with a beer or two over the course of some hours.


Subsequent, Pasquariello mentions that carbonated alcoholic drinks may additionally lead to faster unintended effects. “Extra carbonation tends to imply quicker absorption from the GI system into the bloodstream,” she says. In different phrases, you may begin to really feel the results of beer, onerous seltzer, and glowing wine extra quickly in comparison with different alcoholic bevs. Furthermore, different sources declare that carbonated drinks have the potential to annoy the abdomen lining, which may additionally rev up the speed of alcohol absorption.

Nonetheless, Pasquariello isn’t absolutely on board with this declare, stating that the proof on carbonation’s results on intestine irritation is blended. “It’s usually understood that for most individuals, consuming a couple of carbonated drinks per week is not sufficient to annoy the liner of the intestine to any critical diploma,” she says. In actual fact, she notes that carbonated bevs may very well assist to enhance signs of gastric misery in some individuals—although it’ll finally range throughout totally different GI points and from one individual to the subsequent.

The underside line

To not be a whole buzzkill, however now’s pretty much as good a time as any to notice that alcohol—irrespective of which manner you swing it—remains to be a toxin to the physique. “Lengthy-term alcohol consumption can also be a powerful danger issue for numerous power ailments,” Pasquariello says.

Whether or not you stick to at least one drink for the entire evening or choose to combine up your drinks from one order to the subsequent, preserving your total alcoholic consumption in thoughts will help you bypass a number of the hardest ramifications of imbibing. “On the subject of mixing or combining sure sorts of alcohol, there actually is not any analysis to counsel that you will see an enormous distinction if the general amount of alcohol consumed remains to be the identical,” Pasquariello says.

With that mentioned, mixing sorts of alcohol does have the built-in potential to result in higher consumption total. “When you’re mixing sorts, you are naturally consuming multiple drink, which ends up in these hangover signs the subsequent day,” Pasquariello calls out.

One other key level to be conscious of is mixing various kinds of alcohol in a single bev—i.e., a cocktail that mixes onerous liquor with wine or beer, and even contains a number of sorts of onerous alcohol. As Pasquariello provides, “These drinks can bump up the general alcohol content material of the drink,” in addition to any hostile unintended effects, so be sure you sip with warning.


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