8 Facts and fiction about drinking alcohol.

Posted on 05/22/2018

Myth 1) White wine is a good choice for a person who wants a light drink with less alcohol.

Fact: A glass of white or red wine, a bottle of beer, and a shot of whiskey or any other distilled spirits all contain equivalent amounts of alcohol and are the same to a Breathalyzer. A standard drink is:

•A 12-ounce bottle or can of regular beer

•A 5-ounce glass of wine

•A one and 1/2 ounce of 80 proof distilled spirits (either straight or in a mixed drink)

Myth 2) A "beer belly" is caused by drinking beer.

Fact : A "beer belly" is caused by eating too much food, too many calories, and gaining excess fat. No beer or other alcohol beverage is necessary to achieve this!

Myth 3) Drinking alcohol causes weight gain.

Fact: This is a very commonly believed myth, even among medical professionals, because alcohol has caloric value. However, extensive research around the world has found alcohol consumption does not cause weight gain in men and is often associated with a small weight loss in women.

Myth 4) Switching between beer, wine and spirits will lead to intoxication more quickly than sticking to one type of alcohol beverage.

Fact: Remember that a standard drink of beer, wine, or spirits contain equivalent amounts of alcohol. Alcohol is alcohol and a drink is a drink.

Myth 5) Drinking coffee will help a drunk person sober up.

Fact: Only time can sober up a person...not black coffee, cold showers, exercise, or any other common "cures."

Myth 6) People who can "hold their liquor" are to be envied.

Fact: People who can drink heavily without becoming intoxicated have probably developed a tolerance for alcohol, which can indicate the beginnings of being dependent on alcohol.

Myth 7) Drunkenness and alcoholism are the same thing.

Fact: Many non-alcoholics become, on occasion, intoxicated or drunk. However, that does not make them an alcoholic, provided they are not addicted to alcohol. Of course, intoxication is never completely safe or risk-free and should be avoided.

Myth 8) Alcohol is the cause of alcoholism.

Fact: As a governmental alcohol agency has explained, "Alcohol no more causes alcoholism than sugar causes diabetes." The agency points out that if alcohol caused alcoholism then all drinkers would be alcoholics. In fact, a common belief among members of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is that people are actually “born” alcoholic. Neither alcohol nor anything in their experiences causes them to become an alcoholic. AA argues that many people are born and die alcoholic without ever having had a sip of alcohol. Of course, a person can't be a drinking or practising alcoholic without alcohol.