The effects of different alcohol on sleep

Just how many times have you tricked yourself into drinking to sleep better? Although alcohol does allow healthy people to fall asleep quicker and sleep more deeply for a while, but it reduces rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which is mentally restorative. Therefore, drinking before sleeping must be a thought over scenario.

Let’s all admit, on certain occasions you are bound to drink, a formal dinner invitation, an office success party, the jam session with friends or even a romantic night. But is there a way to do it right? Luckily yes! The severity of your hangover from an alcoholic beverage depends on the amount of congeners — or complex organic molecules — that are produced while the alcohol undergoes fermentation in your body. So less the congeners, safer is the drink right before bed.

Dark Liquors: Whiskey, Tequila, Dark Rum

Dark liquors have the maximum congeners, giving them a distinct color and deeper flavors. Therefore even a small dose of these dark alcohols will leave you with a bad hangover. Tequila especially, is known to leave you very flung and tired after a few shots. These drinks must therefore be consumed with a gap of at least 3-4 hours before bedtime to avoid juxtaposition.

Light Liquors: Vodka, Gin, Light Rum

Even light liquors come with the usual classic hangover symptoms: headaches, nausea, dehydration, tremors and fatigue. But unlike dark liquors, the effect of light drinks is comparatively subtle. So to say, you’ll have to consume a good quantity of Vodka to have the same effect as a few shots of Tequila. But this mustn’t serve as excuse for over-drinking.


The effects of Beer lie midway dark and light liquors, however what comes added is the extra fizz of beer. Beer is highly carbonated and has lots of gas-producing properties, all which build up in your intestines, leading to those uncomfortable, gross, bubbly feelings. Also, Beer has a lot of calories, which attribute to the ‘beer belly’ symptom. The best is to avoid Beer at late night events, or right before sleep – as the calories don’t burn out and the gaseous belly churns – an unhealthy sleep routine totally.


Red and White wine are strikingly different on their effects on sleep. Red wine, like dark liquors, has high amount of congeners, giving serious hangovers. Red wine can make you the sleepiest out of all alcoholic beverages. This is because the skin of the red grapes used to make red wine has high levels of melatonin, the natural chemical present in your bodies helping you fall asleep. While a hangover from white wine will be similar to a hangover from light liquors. It may also make you drowsy due to the presence of some melatonin from grapes, but the drowsiness won’t be as intense as the red wine.


Considered as the safest party staple, Champagne has a strange effect on your body. Given the high level of bubbly carbon, Champagne makes you high faster resulting in less drinking. Since you’ll pass out earlier, compared to other drinks, this is ideally your choice of drink.

So before you collapse in your bed, a few glasses rightly timed and measured can save you from a great deal of embarrassment, a strained next day and especially a disturbed night’s sleep.

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