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Is Mixing Drinks More Likely to Make You Sick?

Find out if mixing drinks is more likely to make you sick in this Howcast video featuring addictions specialist Paul J. Rinaldi, Ph.D.


People are often curious about whether mixing different kinds of alcohol in one drinking episode will be more likely to make you sick than if you stick to one kind of liquor. It's interesting because actually science tells us that no, that's not really true.

There is some evidence that if you drink something, like beer, before drinking liquor that beer actually can upset your stomach more. It is actually heavier, and it can upset the lining of your stomach more than other kinds of liquor. So that when you add liquor on top of it, that it can actually make you sicker. That may be somewhat true, but generally whether you get sick or not is based on the amount of liquor you drink. Generally, if people start out with liquor, they don't usually end the night drinking beer. It often is more likely that people will have a few beers and then go to liquor. And the reason they end up feeling like they get sicker is because they've already had the beer, which usually gets people inebriated more slowly than liquor.

And often they put liquor on top of that, and then they get very drunk. And often we think that it's because of the mixing, but actually it really is because of the amount of liquor and the way your body is metabolizing the different kinds of liquor you've been drinking. So in reality, mixing different kinds of drinking doesn't make you more likely to be sick than if you stick to one. The real reason comes down to the amount of alcohol that you ingest.

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