The simple choice of whether or not to mix liquor with a diet or regular soda may affect how intoxicated you get, a new study suggests.
In the study, men and women ages 21 to 33 who drank vodka mixed with diet soda had breath alcohol concentrations that were 18 percent higher after 40 minutes compared with people who drank the same dose of vodka mixed with regular soda.
In fact, after three to four drinks, people who used diet soda as a mixer had a breath alcohol level that exceeded the legal limit for an adult operating a motor vehicle. People who used regular soda in their drink did not.
What's more, people who used diet mixers scored more poorly on a test of reaction time that people who used regular mixers, although both groups reported feeling similar levels of intoxication."
"Regular mixers may slow down the time it takes a person to become intoxicated from drinking, the researchers said. Alcohol is absorbed by the body when it reaches the small intestine. But the stomach may treat the sugar in regular mixers as if it were food. As a result, the alcohol doesn't reach the small intestine as quickly, Marczinski said. The artificial sweeteners in diet soda, on the other hand, may not delay stomach emptying, so the alcohol travels straight through to the small intestine, Marczinski added. An earlier study found that men who drank vodka mixed with a diet beverage had higher blood alcohol levels than men who drank vodka mixed with a regular beverage. Using an ultrasound, the researchers showed that the regular drink delayed stomach emptying, but the diet drink did not."
"Drinking alcohol mixed with diet soda may get you drunk faster than drinking alcohol mixed with regular soda."