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Liquor Before Beer Never Fear

Drinking Beer - Beer GlassThe law that many college students live by: “Liquor before beer never fear; beer before liquor, never sicker.” The scientific community has investigaed the legitimacy of this “law”, and proved it false. There are articles about congeners, touting the advantages of drinking clear liquor over dark ones. There is evidence that alcohol in carbonated beverages is absorbed more quickly by the body.

This isn’t a science website, it’s a Drinking website. So let’s cut to the chase. The only science needed is that 1.5 ounces of liquor is absorbed much more quickly than 12 ounces of beer, and they contain the same amount of alcohol. Oh, and the more alcohol you drink, the sicker you will be. Let’s examine both possible scenarios.

“Liquor before beer never fear…”

You start your evening enjoying delicious Gin and Tonics. After a couple of hours, the conversation is good, everyone is enjoying themselves. Your friend is going to get another beer and offers to grab you one. In your intoxicated state, this sounds better getting up, and you always enjoy a tasty import. So you take the offer and switch to beer. Now you are drinking beer at your previously established liquor drinking rate. You will consume much less alcohol then if you had stayed with liquor.

“…beer before liquor, never sicker”

You start your evening casually drinking beer. After a couple of hours, the conversation is good, everyone is enjoying themselves. Your friend is going to get another drink and offers to make you one. In your intoxicated state, this sounds better than going all the way to the cooler for a beer, and you always enjoy a tasty Rum and Coke. So you take the offer and switch to mixed drinks. Now you are drinking liquor at your previously established beer drinking rate. You will consume much more alcohol then if you had stayed with beer.

Examining these two scenarios it is pretty obvious why the “law” has persisted through so many college degrees. All the articles on the internet focus on the science behind the saying, but it has nothing to do with science. It is a rule of thumb that works.

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2 Responses to “Liquor Before Beer Never Fear”

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  2. Karren Elsinger Says:

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