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Never go to a cocktail party on an empty stomach

Updated: Feb 18, 2019


Attending cocktail parties is eagerly looked forward to by socialites who are forever scouting for partners in business or pleasure or both, but many of them do not plan the event properly and end up making themselves miserable as well as annoying the host and other guests.


While there are many dos and don’ts when it comes to attending parties and consuming alcohol (there are many tips available online or in book form), one basic dictum that you can’t afford to forget is never to drink alcohol on an empty stomach. Know why? An empty stomach simply sponges in the alcohol as soon as you drink it which may seriously injure the lining of the stomach, so you end up with nausea and vomiting. Alcohol entering your blood stream can also make you drunk too fast and too early in the party, so you are already on a high when others are just warming up, which is a strict no-no for socialites.


After leaving the stomach, the alcohol first goes to the liver which “metabolizes” it, which means it is broken down to water and carbon dioxide but on an empty stomach, alcohol enters the system too fast for the liver to deal with it, so it spills over into the blood stream quickly and goes all over the body, especially the brain, where it leads to “intoxication” (drunkenness). If you slow down and spread out the drinks, alcohol does not hit your brain that hard and that early, so you are okay.


Many sensible and experienced party goers usually have a snack or two before leaving home, so they don’t jump at the sight of the first cocktail or the snacks that go with it. Even if you didn’t get a chance to have a bite before leaving home, you can always go for the snacks tray first and fill up parts of your stomach before you let in the liquor. (Ref: Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 2001 Dec;41(12):1345-50; New York Times, 6 December 20015)

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