As a counselor for both in class and online alcohol awareness classes my students and I often discuss the possible ways a person can drink socially without becoming intoxicated. Of course the answer is simple, have one drink and make sure you are well hydrated, well rested and well fed. But the question remains, are there other ways a person can delay or diminish the effects of alcohol?

Please understand that this article in no way encourages you to drink alcohol. Furthermore, it implicitly encourages you not to drink alcohol and drive. After reading this article, you may find a few beneficial ways to help your body absorb and process the alcohol more quickly and effectively through basic chemistry principles.

In one of my classes, I had two students, both of whom are chemists. Their names are “Charlie” and “Jake”. Perhaps not surprisingly, both are micro-brewers and both really enjoy drinking. Unfortunately, both were caught driving under the influence within hours of each other on the same street corner.

Can You Delay or Diminish the Effects of Alcohol?

In all my years I had never read anything substantial with respect to this topic. At the least, I had never discussed the chemical properties associated with booze and how you might be able to use these properties to your advantage.
Following is a “never-proven” system for delaying and diminishing the effects of alcohol on your body.

It’s All Chemical Reactions

According to Jake and Charlie all you have to do is take a look at the basic chemistry. Both work for the same pharmaceutical firm and both agree that there are four basics of chemistry which will delay and diminish the effects of alcohol on the body.

Eat Man, Eat!!

The first and most obvious way to chemically delay and diminish the effects of alcohol is to eat before, during and after drinking. It is important to have some food in your stomach when you begin to drink. Let’s face it – food will help absorb some of the alcohol and keep it from entering your blood stream.

When filling your belly before drinking, choose foods that are high in fat content. While it may not be good for your diet, these fatty foods stimulate the release of a hormone called enterogastrone. This is important because this hormone slows your digestive rate, allowing the food more time to absorb the alcohol before it is absorbed into the blood stream!

Think Vegas, Baby!

Las Vegas, Nevada is famous for many things. One is for offering free beverages to those who are gambling. This includes alcoholic beverages. Anyone who ever has consumed the free alcoholic concoctions in Vegas knows they all share one statistic – they are totally watered down (unless you order beer or wine). By adding ice, which will melt, and other mixes such as orange juice or tonic water, you in effect are diluting the drink and decreasing the effect of alcohol.

Alcohol is Drank, Not Snorted!

Believe it or not alcohol’s vapor can be intoxicating. The essence of alcohol is ethanol which has a strong odor or vapor that exudes from the liquid be it whiskey or rubbing alcohol.

The pressure of this ethanol is stronger at the surface of the alcoholic beverage. Therefore, the air right above the drink is filled with the ethanol vapor.

By not sniffing the drink before consumption you avoid inhaling a large dose of alcohol-filled vapor. If you hold your breath while sipping the beverage this also keeps some of the alcohol-induced vapor from entering your system!

Don’t Mess With Physics

Everything on the planet is made up of atoms. Atoms band together to form molecules. We all learned that in high school. Alcohol enters our bodies through the blood stream. What is the first place it can enter the blood stream (if we have not inhaled the vapor) - the mouth of course. The ethanol molecules can be absorbed in your mouth – in both the linings of your cheeks and under your tongue. My students swear that if you swallow your drink quickly, it will reach the stomach and more of the alcohol will be absorbed by the food in your stomach and less will get into your blood stream.

Remember that alcohol is both a drug and poisonous to the human body. Abstinence is the best option. If you or someone you care about has a problem with alcohol, I urge you to seek help immediately. If you prefer to maintain total anonymity, there are online alcohol awareness classes and alcohol drug classes as well.

Author's Bio: 

Mike Miller is the Education Director at Online Alcohol Class, a website specializing on alcohol awareness classes and minor in possession classes. You can visit his site at