As life becomes increasingly full of £6 bottles of red wine and Dr. Oetker pizzas, you may find yourself increasingly waking up and feeling SUPER FRESH, only to realise that you’re not fresh, you’re drrrrunkydrunkdrunk, and you have to go to work.

Giphy

Take it from someone who’s been there too many times to really be writing about (sorry mum), here’s the way to do it (if you have any other secret tips then PLEASE tweet them, but this method has seen me through so far).

Contents

Phase one: waking up

Giphy

“Fuck getting old!” you’ll think. “I’m as fresh and perky as when I was 18! Maybe I don’t get hangovers anymore! I’m off to the shower to sing Taylor Swift and live my best life.”

Note: it is vitally important at this point that you continue to the shower as soon as physically possible. In 20 minutes the thought of moving around vigorously might make you vomit, so do it while you can. Try and give your teeth their first brushing now, too.

Phase two: sleepy grooming

New Girl

This’ll be when you get out of the shower, have a little sit down in your towel, and the first wave of drunk nausea hits. POWER THROUGH. Try drying your hair first as it’s only gonna get less appealing, and then do the following:

– Apply some foundation mixed with LOADS of moisturiser so you’re not a flakey-mess-face.

– Put on some mascara to fool people into thinking you’re looking awake all day.

– Wear the brightest / boldest lipstick you own – this will distract from the alcohol seeping out of your skin.

– Be fairly generous with the perfume – see above point about seepage.

– Brush your teeth again – you stink

Phase three: arriving at work

Giphy

By this point you’ll be starting to feel REALLY WEIRD and paranoid. You’ll want to eat to sober yourself up – DO NOT DO THIS UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, no matter how much you pine for a cheesy croissant from Pret. Eating will bring you into Hangover Of Doom way too quickly and you’ll hate yourself forever.

Instead, buy yourself a big, sweet drink from a Starbucks or something. Caffeine and sugar is what you need, and if it’s really big drink then you can put it in front of your mouth when people talk to you for most of the morning, and mask your horrible wine breath, you mess.

If you’re still feeling chipper, use this time to charm people with enthusiastic compliments.

Phase four: oh god you’re still at work

Giphy

It really depends on what your job is, but the coffee-mask will help in most. You will be confused, do not make any big claims or seal any important deals. If you have to go to meetings, do not say anything but take a lot of notes. If you have to be active, just be the “Actually Claire is the expert here so I’ll let her fill you in,” person. Claire will thank you in the long run.

Phase five: LUNCH

Tumblr

Take lunch as close to 12 as you can, and go and have a Bloody Mary. You will be feeling like shit at this point and think it’s the last thing you need, but fucking do it. If BMs aren’t your thing, try a vodka and orange, or a rum and ginger beer – something that absolutely will not taste of booze but just give you a little bit of edge that you need to get through the day.

Carbs at this point are important. From personal experience, fish ‘n’ chips are recommended, a pizza is a close second, and some kind of jacket potato situation is a good third.

Phase six: cruising out the rest of the day

BBC

Look, Claire’s probably gonna wanna talk about how you stitched her up a bit earlier, so just listen to what she has to say and look sorry, before telling her how she really IS the expert and anything you said would have been crap in comparison.

Now’s the time for you to get stuck into the One Big Task you’ve been putting off for ages because it’s such a faff. You are primed for faffing right now, as you DGAF about doing lots of things Look for a project that needs;

Filing

Archiving

Researching

Really boring data entry

Really boring anything else repetitive

You can zone out in a monotonous routine until the day is done, and Whatsapp everyone else from last night to compare notes.

Then go for a drink after work, natch.

Giphy

Do you have Being Drunk At Work tips? Tweet them to Cosmopolitan why dontcha.

9 Weird Things That Happen To Your Body After A Night Of Drinking

We’re all familiar with that painful dehydration, pounding headache, and unpleasant nausea that results after a night of consuming alcohol. But those aren’t the only effects of too much booze — there are a number of other weird things that can happen to your body after a night of drinking. The classic symptoms of a hangover are the most obvious, but there some other effects of drinking that can happen all throughout your body, even if you aren’t fully aware of them.

“When a person consumes more alcohol than they can handle, their blood alcohol level (BAL), can quickly rise to toxic levels,” says Edison de Mello, MD, PhD over email. “And since that alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream, it is quickly diffused into all the tissues in your body — including vital organs.”

It’s quite obvious, but to avoid these negative effects, you’re best limiting the amount you drink each time you indulge in some beverages. “The recommended maximum intake of alcohol is one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men,” says de Mello. “Four or more drinks per day is believed to be the beginning of binge drinking.”

A night out can cause all sorts of crazy things to happen — besides just drunk texting your ex. Here are nine weird things that happen to your body after a night of drinking.

1. You’re More Likely To Get Sick

A study published in the journal Alcohol found that drinking alcohol affects the immune system immediately, sometimes as quickly as 20 minutes. “Frequent drinking can lead to more colds, flu, or other illnesses,” says de Mello. “This is because alcohol makes the body more susceptible to infections.”

2. Your Heart Races

“Heavy drinking affects your heart’s ability to regulate its rhythm,” says de Mello. “In most cases, it dies down after a day or two — but for anyone with underlying heart problems, it could lead to hospitalization, or more severe problems down the road.”

3. Your Sleep Is Disturbed

Although a night of drinking might knock you out by the time you’re ready for bed, you’re likely to wake up feeling much more tired than if you hadn’t hit up happy hour. Drinking alcohol reduces rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which is the restorative part of sleep, according to a review published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. This disruption in sleep leads you to feel more drowsy and less well-rested.

4. You Experience Tummy Troubles

Drinking alcohol can lead to digestive distress. “For one, over-consuming can throw of the balance of good bacteria in your GI system,” says de Mello. “Even worse, it can break down the mucous lining in your digestive system, making it easier for waste and other particulates to enter your bloodstream — and cause long-term health issues.”

5. You’re More Likely To Feel Anxious

That stress you feel after a night might be more than just regret. Alcohol changes levels of serotonin and other neurotransmitters in the brain, which can worsen anxiety, according to Healthline. This can make you feel even worse once the alcohol has worn off.

6. Your Face Swells Up

The next day after a consuming a few drinks, we don’t usually look our best. This is because alcohol causes bloating and inflammation in the body, which can lead to red eyes and a puffy face, according to holistic skincare expert Paula Simpson, who spoke to Fox News. All that dehydration can also cause your body to hold on to water weight.

7. Your Brain Doesn’t Function As Well

After a night of drinking, your working memory can be impacted, and you might find that you have a diminished ability to perform basic tasks, according to research from Keele University. Research shows that even one night of binge drinking can destroy brain cells, as well as “cause brain shrinkage, and even cause frontal lobe damage,” says de Mello.

8. Your Blood Sugar Drops

Ever felt shaky and weak after a long night? You can thank alcohol’s effect on blood sugar for that. Alcohol causes your blood sugar levels to drop, as quickly as immediately or even up to 12 hours later, according to Livestrong. This can lead to feelings of dizziness and fatigue.

9. You Sweat More

Because alcohol is so dehydrating, your body has a hard time regulating temperature, which can lead to increased sweating. If you’re feeling yourself perspire much more after a night on the town, you can blame it on the alcohol.

Here’s why you wake up early after a night of drinking

Bohbeh/

The INSIDER Summary:

  • Waking up early after a late night drinking is common.
  • After two drinks, alcohol disrupts your sleep patterns.
  • After alcohol is metabolized, adaptations your body made to adjust for its effects are now unnecessary, throwing your body out of whack and jolting you awake.

A drink or two (or four) may help you fall asleep as soon as you crawl into bed, but they don’t seem very soporific four hours later, when you’re wide awake and regretting all the decisions leading up to the hangover you’re currently experiencing. If you’ve ever wondered why you wake up early after drinking all night, trust me — you’re not the only one. Aside from being one of the universe’s cruelest ironies, it’s an actual, documented phenomenon. So what gives?

As you’ve undoubtedly noticed, alcohol tends to make you so drowsy you’ll pass out on any available surface. According to research, a nightcap does help you fall asleep faster; as long as you stick to just one drink, it’s been shown to improve sleep quality and duration. The problem arises when you knock back any more than that — after two drinks, alcohol totally disrupts your sleep patterns. In a 2013 paper reviewing existing research, scientists laid things out: As a rule, alcohol makes you fall asleep quicker, and during the first half of the night, it increases slow-wave sleep. Sometimes known as deep sleep, this dreamless stage is associated with memory formation, and it appears to be primarily responsible for reducing sleep need. Basically, after you’ve had a few drinks, you initially sleep more deeply.

Then comes the second half of the night, which is when people start to experience a phenomenon called the “rebound effect.” As sleep researchers Dr. Timothy Roehrs and Dr. Thomas Roth explained in a paper analyzing alcohol and sleep, this effect describes what happens when “certain physiological variables… change in the opposite direction to the changes induced by alcohol and even exceed normal levels once alcohol is eliminated from the body.”

Flickr

Basically, in case you forgot, alcohol totally counts as a drug, and your body has to adjust for its effects — like the production of sleep-inducing adenosine and inhibition of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate — when it enters your body. After the alcohol is metabolized a few hours later, these adaptations are now unnecessary, and your body is all out of whack. Needless to say, this can jolt you awake.

Then there’s alcohol’s well-documented effect on REM sleep coming into play. The stage associated with dreams and learning, REM sleep is one of the most restorative parts of sleep — and it’s reduced by alcohol. Not only are you more likely to wake up thanks to the rebound effect, but you’re also missing out on the most restorative stage of shut-eye. No wonder hangovers make you feel the reanimated corpse of a reanimated corpse.

The good news is that a drink or two isn’t going to disrupt your sleep patterns too horribly, if at all. If you’re planning on drinking more than that, your best bet is probably to avoid pounding back shots until last call, so you can give your body time to metabolize the stuff before you go to bed.

Or just plan for spending the morning wrapped in a blanket burrito watching cartoons while you wait to fall asleep again — it’s your call.

Lots of people have a little booze before bed to help them get to sleep — but while a night cap may help in the dozing-off department, too much alcohol can actually do a number on the overall quality of your shuteye. Let’s take a look at some of the important differences between drunk sleep and sober sleep, including why it’s so damn hard to sleep in after a tipple-tastic night on the town.

Dosage

Most people assume correctly that liquor and beer can actually get your eyelids feeling downright leaden, as anyone who’s had a taste of alcohol has surely experienced its sleep-promoting qualities. The ethanol in your intoxicant of choice acts as a sedative, and for most people one drink is enough to feel its effects. There’s even evidence that capping your intake at one brew, cocktail, or glass of grapes — what most researchers deem a “low dose” of alcohol — can actually up your total sleep time, while decreasing the number of instances you wake during the night.

Advertisement

Speaking of which, it’s important to remember the “one drink” limit is really just a rule of thumb. Drink-ceilings vary from person to person. Plus, a single drink can have different effects even on the same individual — depending, for example, on what he or she’s eaten that day. For a better idea of what your one-drink limit is, try out these handy calculators, courtesy of the NIH.

Anyway, if you plan on downing more than one drink, you’re looking at some pretty serious bedtime disturbance. In fact, even a single-cocktail nightcap can have an undesired effect on your sleep cycle if you make a habit of it. According to Timothy Roehrs and Thomas Roth — director of research and division head, respectively, of the Sleep Disorders and Research Center in Detroit, MI — the scientific literature shows that among nonalcoholics, the occasional use of alcohol as a sleep aid can improve sleep initially, but that people tend to develop a tolerance for its effects pretty quickly. As tolerance increases, so does your alcohol-intake, and then you’re looking at more serious problems than an inability to get to catch some truly restful winks. Like, you know, a raging case of alcoholism.

The Rebound Effect

But even moderate alcohol consumption can ruin a good night’s sleep. According to Roehrs and Roth, a modest dose of alcohol (defined as inducing a Blood Alcohol Content in the range of 0.06–0.08) within an hour of bedtime may knock you right out — but it’ll exact a serious toll on your body during the second half of your normal sleep period, during what’s called a “rebound effect” (emphasis added):

The term “rebound effect” means that certain physiological variables (e.g., sleep variables, such as the amount of REM sleep) change in the opposite direction to the changes induced by alcohol and even exceed normal levels once alcohol is eliminated from the body. This effect results from the body’s adjustment to the presence of alcohol during the first half of the sleep period in an effort to maintain a normal sleep pattern. Once alcohol is eliminated from the body, however, these adjustments result in sleep disruption.

Advertisement

Given that the average person metabolizes alcohol at a rate of around 0.01% to 0.02% per hour, a person with a BAC in the range of 0.06—0.08 immediately before dozing off will finish processing the sauce in his or her system after about four or five hours. Ever woken up bright and early after a rowdy bout of late-night/early-morning boozing? Now you know why: the clearance of alcohol from your body probably triggered a rebound effect, ripping you right out of the deepest period of your sleep cycle.

Advertisement

“Your deep sleep is when body restores itself, and alcohol can interfere with this,” says John Shneerson, head of Papworth Hospital’s Resipiratory Support & Sleep Center, the largest sleep facility in the UK.

“As the alcohol starts to wear off, your body can come out of deep sleep and back into REM sleep, which is much easier to wake from. That’s why you often wake up after just a few hours sleep when you’ve been drinking.”

Advertisement

So how best to ensure a restful night’s sleep? Try to time it so that most of the alcohol in your system has been metabolized before you hit the hay. If you’re on the cusp of being good to drive (i.e. right around a BAC of 0.08 — true for all 50 states and D.C. as of January, 2013), you’ll want to quit hitting the sauce no less than four hours before bedtime. Easier in theory than in practice, we know, but at least now you know the rules your body is playing by.

For tons more info on alcohol’s effects on sleep, check out this exhaustive overview at The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

Advertisement

Images via

Why Do You Wake Up So Early After A Night Of Drinking?

All types of drinking alcohol are essentially made from ethanol, and the body breaks that down the same way, regardless of whether it’s gin, lager, or bourbon. So your plans to sleep late may be handicapped no matter what your alcoholic beverage of choice.

Getting Better Sleep

Darker alcohols contain more impurities which are generated in the course of the alcohol fermentation process. These can contribute to the consequences of drinking attractively packaged poison.

Some include methanol, acetone, and tannins. These pollutants give alcohol a darker shade, which is why clear alcohols tend to be purer, states Manseur.

The second best way to have a lengthier, more restful sleep after alcohol consumption is to prepare your body ahead of time.

That means giving it the essential supplements, minerals, amino acids, antioxidants, and other fundamentals to help combat the incoming poisons.

Of course, the most obvious and sensible way to prevent sleep disruption and all those evil hangovers is to stop drinking completely. If you are ready to start living a happy sober life

0
Shares

Here’s Why Alcohol Wakes You Up in the Middle of the Night

After a swinging Saturday night at the bars, few things feel better than your head hitting the pillow for a good night’s rest. But as easy as it is to fall asleep under the relaxing influence of alcohol, the substance is only creating the illusion of sweet slumber.

As everyone over the age of 30 well knows, once you wake up from an alcohol-induced repose (usually between 2 and 4am) fueled by a deranged level of thirst, it’s especially hard to get back to sleep. Being the curious minds we are, we decided to dive into the science behind why alcohol is such a bedtime buzzkill. So read on, and if you find that this happens to you often, consider cutting back on the booze. And if that doesn’t work, be sure to memorize these 10 Genius Tricks for Falling Back Asleep in the Middle of the Night.

1 The Body Processes Alcohol While We Sleep

In reality, drinking alcohol before bedtime is the cause of many a restless night—studies show that an average of 55 percent of alcoholics suffer from insomnia. Why? As we sleep, our body is working hard to process the alcohol in our system, and once it’s out, something signals us to wake up. Doctors aren’t quite sure why the body does this, but their theory is that the brain chemicals that stir us awake are triggered once the alcohol is done being processed.

“Depending on your metabolism, alcohol is going to leave your system after a few hours,” sleep doctor Damien Stevens explained to Time. “When that happens, you wake up.”

2 Alcohol Is Technically A Drug

“Alcohol is a depressant, which can help somebody feel like it’s relaxing them and helping them to fall asleep,” Charlene Gamaldo, MD, explained to Everyday Health. “But alcohol is also rapidly metabolized in your system and, when your body washes the alcohol out, it’s more likely to cause what we call a rebound alertness.”

This rebound alertness, as its known, is precisely what disrupts our REM sleep, the restorative phase of sleep that helps us store memories and even learn new information. People often forget that alcohol is technically a drug, and our body has to work in overtime to process its effects.

3 Alcohol Makes You Go to the Bathroom—A Lot

There are also some other, slightly more obvious reasons why alcohol makes us restless. After a few glasses of Chardonnay, the body is working hard to metabolize all that alcohol, which means that your bladder is filling up fast and begs to be emptied. Not to mention that alcohol dehydrates you, so your body will attempt to wake you up for a big glass of water.

4 The Body Needs Time To Process The Alcohol

If you do plan on drinking, try to take your last sip well before you hit the hay. Studies have shown that drinking in the evening is associated with increased restlessness compared to drinking earlier in the day. As Michael K. Breus, Ph.D., explained in Phycology Today: “Alcohol consumption, in excess or too close to bedtime, diminishes the quality of sleep, often leads to more waking throughout the night, and lessens time spent in REM sleep and slow wave sleep in later parts of the night.” And for more great health advice, know that You Can Lose This Much Weight by Getting More Sleep.

5 A Little Alcohol Goes A Long Way

If you do want to drink something to calm yourself right before bed, there is hope yet: Research shows that a drink before bed (capped at just one) can improve sleep quality and duration. So long as you don’t overdo it, your REM will be A-OK.

For more tips on sleeping soundly, check out these 70 Tips For Your Best Sleep Ever.

To discover more amazing secrets about living your best life, to sign up for our FREE daily newsletter!

All Night

Come on, big fella, you drunk, big fella
Two sips and now you wanna trip, big fella
You not a drinker, I can see it all in your leg, big fella
You wobbly, big fella, you finna fall
Sit down, you drunk, big fella

All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, ayy, ayy
All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, hey, hey
All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, ayy, ayy, ayy, ayy (Tryna get in)

Everybody outside, everybody outside
When I pull up outside all night long
Everybody high five, everybody wanna smile
Everybody wanna lie, that’s nice, no
Oh, now you wanna chill? Oh, now you wanna build?
Oh, now you got the bill? That’s cool though
Oh, now you got the gas? oh, now you wanna laugh?
Oh, now you need a cab? That’s true though
All you do is talk, I ain’t got shit to say
Can’t no one get in my car, I don’t even valet
Long discussions, oh, you my cousin?
No you wasn’t, you just wanna ride
You just wanna talk about politics, Chicago shit and rocket ships
Shut up, start dancing, ho

All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, ayy, ayy
All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, hey, hey
All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, ayy, ayy, ayy, ayy (Tryna get in)

You just wanna spill fries in the seat
Sprite on the seat, come ride on the seat, ayy
Last girl, she’ll lie on the seat, she’ll fart on the seat
Now she jog in the streets, say
I don’t trust no one faking like a fan, asking for a pic
You should use your phone, call an Uber
You a goofy if you think I don’t know you need a lift
Is you is or is you ain’t got gas money?
No IOU’s or debit cards, I need cash money
So back up, back up, I need space now
I need you to slow down, it’s not a race now
Can’t really hear what you gotta say now
Shut up, start dancing, ho

All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, ayy, ayy
All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, hey, hey
All night, I been drinking all night
I been drinking all night, I been drinking, ayy, ayy, ayy (Tryna get in)

Does Drinking Every Day Make Me an Alcoholic?

Authored By American Addiction Centers Editorial Staff Posted to: Alcoholism, Drugs and Society, Understanding Addiction Does having a cocktail or glass of wine every night make you an alcoholic?

Every evening when you get home from work, you drink a glass of wine. Throughout the day, you look forward to this evening ritual.

Although, tonight, as you swallow that first sip, you suddenly realize something. You’ve been drinking every day for as long as you can remember. With that realization, a little voice in your head might start wondering: Am I an alcoholic?

You can rest assured that alcohol addiction hotlines are staffed with compassionate individuals who are there to help – a friendly, judgment-free, helpful voice awaits those who call.

Drinking to Unwind Or Drinking Problem

According to a recent article in Men’s Health, George Koob, Ph.D., believes having a drink or two every night isn’t an absolute indication you’re headed for trouble. In fact, there’s very little data about one or two drinks negatively impacting your health or hastening your decline into alcoholism.

However, there are limitations. Koob recommends some restrictions, such as:

  • Keeping each drink within the NIAAA’s definitions of minimum (typically a standard drink contains 0.6 fluid ounces)
  • Maintaining a total weekly intake below 14 drinks (anything over this amount elevates your risk of an alcohol use disorder)

The Difference Between Dependence and Addiction

But how do you know if you’re addicted to alcohol or simply just dependent on it?

Koob states, “Even if you find yourself feeling irritable or antsy when you miss your evening drink, that’s not a sign that you’re addicted, per se.”

“Dependence often goes hand in hand with addiction, but they’re not the same things,” he explains.

“You can become dependent on almost any substance if it’s part of your daily rhythm, but that doesn’t mean you’re addicted.”

He points out you would feel the exact same way – irritable and antsy – if you normally ate dinner at seven but pushed your meal to later in the evening.

When it comes to sleep, eating, and any kind of substance, “anything that disrupts your normal routine is going to put you on edge, but that’s not an indication you have a use disorder,” Koob adds.

A Few Warning Signs

There are certain situations that should cause concern, such as:

  • A family history of alcoholism
  • Slamming down your first drink of the day in one or two gulps
  • Using alcohol as a coping mechanism

Finally, and most importantly, according to Koob, if there’s any indication your social, personal, or professional life has been negatively impacted by alcohol, take that as a reliable sign that you have a problem and need to make some changes to your lifestyle.

Additional Reading: 6 Common Sense Tips to Avoid Alcoholism

Image Source: iStock

Alcohol and Sleep

You’ve had a long and busy day. A drink or two will help you sleep, won’t it?

Alcohol might help you nod off, but even just a couple of drinks can affect the quality of your sleep. And if you’re regularly drinking more than the UK Chief Medical Officers’ (CMO) low risk drinking guidelines by consuming more than 14 units a week you may find you wake up the next day feeling like you haven’t had any rest at all.

How alcohol affects your sleep patterns

Regular drinking can affect the quality of your sleep making you feel tired and sluggish. This is because drinking disrupts your sleep cycle.1

When you drink alcohol before bed you may fall into deep sleep quicker. This is why some people find drinking alcohol helps them drop-off to sleep. But as the night goes on you spend more time in this deep sleep and less time than usual in the more restful, Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage of sleep.2

This can leave you feeling tired the next day no matter how long you stay in bed.

But having alcohol-free days can help. You should be sleeping better and find it easier to wake up in the morning.

Drinking can equal a disturbed night’s sleep

When you drink more than usual, you may have to get up in the night to go to the toilet. And it’s not just the liquid you’ve drunk that you’ll be getting rid of. Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it encourages the body to lose extra fluid through sweat too, making you dehydrated.

Drinking can also make you snore loudly. It relaxes the muscles in your body, which means the tissue in your throat, mouth and nose can stop air flowing smoothly, and is more likely to vibrate.

So, all in all alcohol can equal a fitful night’s sleep.

Find out if you’re drinking too much with our Alcohol Self Assessment Test

Why you should avoid alcohol just before bedtime

If you are drinking alcohol, try to avoid it too close to bedtime. Give your body time to process the alcohol you’ve drunk before you try to sleep – on average it takes an hour to process one unit, but this can vary widely from person to person.

Find out how many units are in your drinks with our unit and Calorie Calculator

to keep track of what you’re drinking over time and set yourself goals for cutting back.

You could still be over the drink driving limit the next morning. Understand the risks here

Tips for a good night’s sleep

Some things to try if you want to sleep soundly and wake up feeling fresh:

  • Stay away from caffeine and alcohol late in the evening. Try a hot, milky or herbal drink instead.
  • Make sure your bedroom is cool and uncluttered, and your bed is comfortable.
  • Take exercise to relieve the day’s stresses and strains.
  • Make lists of things to be tackled the next day before you go to bed, so they’re not swimming around in your head.

Dangers of Drinking Alcohol in the Mornings

One of the images of the alcoholic in the public perception is somebody who drinks alcohol as soon as they wake up in the morning. This is why if somebody admits that they drink at this time of the day they will usually be viewed as having a problem. In reality there is not much difference between drinking alcohol at 9 in the morning and 9 at night. There can even be reasonable justifications for why people drink at breakfast time. Those individuals who work on the night shift may have a few drinks before they go to bed – just the same as other workers feel entitled to do at the end of their work day. In some cultures it is even considered acceptable for people to go to the bar for a single drink before starting work for the day.

Morning Drinking and Hair of the Dog

The hair of the dog is a drink that people consume in order to lessen the effects of their hangover. If people have consumed an excessive amount of alcohol the night before they can have many unpleasant physical symptoms the next day. This can make life difficult if they need to go to work or perform some duty. There are two main reasons why drinking in the morning will lessen the affects of alcohol. Firstly it prevents heavy drinkers from going into alcohol withdrawals which can account for some of the hangover affects. The hair of the dog can also be affective because it delays the metabolisms of methanol – thus delaying the symptoms of hangover.

Although drinking alcohol the morning after a heavy drinking session may help to alleviate the symptoms of a hangover it is not recommended. It only puts of the symptoms and it can too easily become a habit. If the individual has things to do that day then even a small amount of alcohol could affect their performance. They may become even less productive than they would be with a hangover. If they are going to be driving then even a small amount of alcohol could put them over the limit when combined with their blood alcohol content from the night before. It can also be a slippery slope from hair of the dog to full blown alcoholism.

Morning Drinking and Shift Workers

Some people who regularly work the nightshift like to have a few drinks when they are finished their shift. While this is technically morning time they will be behaving in much the same way as if it were the evening. The bars that serve night workers can be busy and those who drink sensibly should be able to engage in this activity without it causing them too much harm. Some people find that drinking in the mornings impacts their ability to sleep. People can also find that they feel inebriated faster because their circadian rhythm is not fully adjusted to the night shift. If people find it difficult to eat while working the night shift it will not be a good idea for them to drink on an empty stomach.

The Dangers of Drinking Alcohol in the Morning

There are many dangers associated with drinking alcohol in the morning including:

* If the individual feels that they need to drink first thing in the morning in order to face the day it is a sign of psychological dependence on alcohol.
* Those people who need to drink first thing in order to overcome physical symptoms area also likely to be alcoholics. If these individuals do not manage to drink in the morning it will mean that they experience withdrawal symptoms.
* If the individual drinks in the morning it can easily lead to drinking all day. Those who drink a few beers in the morning can have a hangover in the afternoon unless they keep drinking.
* Drinking in the morning can mean that the individual is more prone to accidents.
* Drinking before going to work is likely to reduce productivity. It can also harm the individual’s reputation if others suspect they have been drinking.
* Those who drink in the morning will usually struggle to take care of their responsibilities.
* Many people who consume alcohol for breakfast will do so with an empty stomach. This is extremely damaging for their health an increase the likelihood of developing alcoholic liver disease and alcoholic dementia.
* Those individuals who drink in the morning will often do so alone. This means that they are not drinking to be sociable but for the effects of the alcohol.

Last month I acted as official witness for two friends as they got their marriage license. Afterward, she went to work while he asked if I’d like to celebrate with a drink.

It was 10 A.M. on a Tuesday.

We left the City Clerk’s downtown and walked north, passing century-old Irish pubs with their doors chained shut, chic Tribeca brunch spots not serving anything stronger than freshly-squeezed OJ, and East Village dives closed since 4 A.M. After an hour of walking through neighborhoods, which surely used to have countless morning drinkers a generation ago, we realized we were thwarted.

Drinking before noon isn’t just shunned by society nowadays, it’s almost impossible to accomplish.

What Doesn’t Count

I know what you’re thinking, “This guy is a loser. I drink before noon ALL THE TIME.” Maybe, but not at those before-noon times I’m referring to. Sipping “bottomless” Bloodys with your Saturday morning Eggs Benedict is boring. Popping that first Coors Light while tailgating on NFL Sunday is no big deal. And who doesn’t wake up on a quasi-holiday like Columbus Day and think: “No work…might as well finish a handle of Old Grand-Dad.”

Drinking before noon doesn’t count on weekends, holidays, or “days off.” It doesn’t count when you’re staying at a hotel, if you’re having a 9 A.M. Jack and Coke while playing the Vegas slots, and it most certainly doesn’t count if you’re drinking anything served in a flute. Proudly tell me you “day drink” every “Sunday Funday,” and I’ll tell you to have some dignity, man.

Blue-Collar Boozing

In gritty movies from the ’70s, many characters start their mornings with an eye-opener to help get them through their tough jobs. I think fondly of Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken in The Deer Hunter, popping cans of Rolling Rock before heading off to the steel mill. But does this even occur any more?

As I walk by construction sites nowadays all I see are… men doing their jobs. Officially, drinking in public was outlawed in New York City in 1979, yet City Councilman Frederick E. Samuel noted, “We do not recklessly expect the police to give a summons to a Con Ed worker having a beer with his lunch.” Aha! So pre-noon drinking was indeed happening in the recent past. Former construction worker Tom Franzson confirms as much:

“My own day drinking would sometimes start at 6:30 A.M. with a coded knock on a midtown tavern (where I) would gain admittance to a darkened refuge for men going to work, or, a number of city employees ending their night shift.”

Do these places still exist?

By the time I’d finished my whiskey, the bar had become full of men who surely had a deep understand

The Actual Laws

Let’s discuss the actual laws for a second. Because, when it comes to liquor laws, assumptions are often tossed around by people too lazy to even use Wikipedia. It may vary where you live, but in New York state, there are only four hours each day you can’t serve the good stuff: 4:00 a.m. to 8:00 A.M., clearly the least happy hours.

So I should have been able to find some joints serving from 8:00 ’til noon. And, in my neighborhood, I finally did: diners, which you’ve probably noticed always have a few bottled beers and boxes of wine stacked near the register. I popped into Gracie’s Corner one morning and ordered a Corona with my lumberjack’s platter. Under the bright fluorescent lights, surrounded by old farts reading the Daily News, it was one of the least satisfying tipples of my life. I would have to do better.

Before-Noon Nirvana

So, the next morning, I did something atypical for a stay-at-home writer: I rose early, showered, and actually got dressed. I left my apartment at sunrise, blending into the throngs of be-suited commuters boarding the packed trains headed downtown. They were heading to jobs in law and finance, but I was headed to drink at one place I knew would be open.

I arrived on a quiet, cobblestone street in the South Seaport at 7:45, wanting to see what actually happens when the legendary Jeremy’s Ale House first opens. I imagined a Black Friday-like stampede of drunks, eager to get their morning’s first fix of Wild Turkey the second the doors unlocked. Unfortunately, that Norman Rockwellian vision of alcoholism no longer existed. Jeremy’s front door was already open and no customers were inside.

An employee mopping the floor gave me a weird look as I entered, probably thinking I was some fanny-packing tourist looking for coffee. I asked if I could get a beer. He checked his watch and shrugged, setting his mop in the bucket to walk around the bar.

Jeremy’s famously serves beer in 32-ounce Styrofoam cups which are humiliating enough for a thirty-five-year-old to be slugging in the evening, much less the ass crack of dawn. I had planned on ordering breakfast with my beer to make it feel less weird, but unfortunately Jeremy’s menu consists solely of fried fish. Though their calamari was “voted best in NY” (no citation), I passed. I nursed my Killian’s for a half-hour, but, unfortunately, not another patron entered. It was too bad, because with discarded bras lining the ceiling, Jeremy’s is quite fun at a more reasonable hour.

I ventured on to the second spot on my breakfast bar crawl, the nearby Whitehorse Tavern—not to be confused with the place Dylan Thomas died—a little further south on Bridge Street. It had signs prominently advertising “Happy Hour All Day,” but at 8:45 it also had a steel bar over the door, double-padlocked. Its Yelp page claimed it opened at eight, but maybe I needed to know one of those coded knocks. The nearby Nassau Bar was likewise closed. I’d been told by a friend “in the know” this was where third shift construction workers headed after work, but if that was true in the past, it no longer was now.

Now I may not be the world’s greatest reporter, but I’m damn good at sniffing out a drink when I need one. So it was shocking how difficult this was continuing to prove. The Financial District, once legendary for early morning drinking, was a wash, and heading further uptown was no better. Had people simply quit drinking before noon? Or were the only people who now did so Roger Sterling-types, well-heeled enough to have an office bar cart loaded with decanters of Scotch? Luckily, I knew one more spot to try and whet my early morning whistle.

Milano’s is a legendary joint on East Houston, dingy and divey in an area of town that no longer is. So when I peered through the foggy windows I was surprised to actually see customers chatting with a bartendress. Neither side of that transaction even seemed depressed. I entered, plopped on a tattered barstool next to an older gentleman, and ordered a Jameson.

Now people who drink before noon don’t look like the kind of folks who want to be questioned as to that fact, but after finally finding a before-noon drinker, I had to ask, “What brings you to a bar at this hour?”

The man studied me, not even annoyed, before matter-of-factly responding, “What else I got to do?”

He had a point, and, by the time I’d finished my whiskey, the bar had become full of similar men with nothing else to do. Men who surely had a deep understanding of that Johnny Cash lyric: “The beer I had for breakfast wasn’t bad, so I had one more for dessert.”

I did have stuff to do. I wasn’t meant to be a before-noon drinker. I decided not to have one more for dessert and instead grabbed breakfast at Russ & Daughters down the block. I ordered a $14 bagel with lox. It was the best drunk food of my life. It was 10:15 A.M.

The Airport Aside

There remains one place where before-noon drinking is still indulged in by respectable Americans: the airport. It’s not odd to see some frequent flier polishing off a Bud Light with his Sbarro’s stromboli…at 6:30 A.M. in Terminal C. Is this because air travelers are lonely, stressed by an impending flight, or maybe starting off strong as they begin a vacation? No, I think it’s simply that time doesn’t matter at airports—it’s the afternoon somewhere, perhaps even where you’re hoping to soon be.

Yet, drinking before noon only has its naughty allure if you’re doing it when time does matter. As in, when you should be doing something productive. Like working.

Aaron Goldfarb Aaron Goldfarb lives in Brooklyn and is a novelist and the author of ‘Hacking Whiskey.’

The sight of Barack Obama downing a pint at his pre-G7 summit Alpine breakfast on Sunday was surprising and cheering in equal measure. Drinking early in the day doesn’t usually come with such official approbation. We tend to think of morning drinks in extremes – a bloody mary or swift half to provide a much-needed quick fix after a long night, or perhaps bubbles for special occasion breakfasts. However, in many parts of the world, booze at breakfast is seen as a perfectly normal way to start the day.

The weisswurst frühstück Obama was enjoying is a beery Bavarian stalwart: boiled sausages with mustard, freshly baked pretzels and a cold weissbier, the operative word here being cold. Alcohol in the morning must be fresh and zippy. A bit of fizz, something dry, a hint of sweetness, a sharp kick – as drinks writer Henry Jeffreys puts it, “it’s the pick-me-up that makes you mellow”. Beer or ale for breakfast is not uncommon in the rest of northern Europe, particularly in Belgium – and even, until as late as the 1980s, in England, where breweries would give free drinks to their workers. While this was probably to counter pilfering, it also continued a long tradition of brewers enjoying a hearty brew to start the day, harking back to the “liquid bread” of 16th-century friars. It would seem there is more to an early-morning pint than just hair of the dog.

Around the Mediterranean, you’ll often see older patrons having a caffè corretto, the espresso quite literally “corrected” with a shot of something stronger: grappa, sambuca or brandy. It is a habit Mitch Tonks and Mat Prowse adopted at a fish market in Spain 15 years ago; they call it their morning fire. The grappa is sometimes substituted with armagnac, Fernet-Branca or whatever other local spirit the two chefs encounter on their travels. “It takes the body by surprise,” writes Tonks in his new cookbook, The Seahorse. “We have found that in this moment of lightness and clarity we have made our best decisions.” Which makes the Seahorse restaurant staff living proof that drinking in the day might not actually render working minds as useless as you’d think. It’s all about being restrained: “The trick is to have just one glass,” says Tonks, “otherwise the surprise is spoiled.”

London wine bar Vinoteca has just opened a Kings Cross branch, the first to serve breakfast. “You don’t have to not drink wine early in the day,” counsels co-owner Brett Woonton. Woonton and his partner, Charlie Young, focused on bottles that would work best with breakfast, plumping for lightness and freshness over full-bodied heft; drinks that would be accessible and approachable. So they have got a pink moscato, the sweet, fruity fizz of which sits handsomely with a plate of pancakes; a slightly frizzante, dry red bonarda that cuts judiciously through the richness of a meaty breakfast; and a German riesling to pair with fresh fruit or muesli.

Vinoteca in King’s Cross, London, advertises its breakfast wines. Photograph: Alicia Canter/Guardian

For Woonton, a good breakfast wine should be the oenological equivalent of an early-morning swim: invigorating and enlivening. And that is a strategy tried and tested in Sicily. Food writer Rachel Roddy, the author of Five Quarters, says her partner’s grandfather, a Sicilian farmer, “drank a litre of white with his breakfast of bread and caponata every single morning at six”. That would be followed by a whole lemon, eaten like an apple, before he left the house. “He also drank a litre for lunch,” she continues “and never drank water. He was tiny, without fat, as strong as a horse and he lived until 95.”

The thought of all that wine, particularly without water, is a terrifying prospect, but there may well be something in it in moderation. Breakfast, it is becoming increasingly clear, is the meal of the day – maybe a celebratory tipple should become a mainstay on the menu.

I want to be drunk when I wake up

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *