Is there anything you can do to offset or prevent problems caused by dehydration from drinking alcohol? A person who is already at risk of dehydration from one or more of the above factors should avoid or limit alcohol consumption. Research shows that milk is one of the best beverages for hydration, even better than water or sports drinks. Researchers credit milk’s natural electrolytes, carbohydrates, and protein for its effectiveness. Have at least one 16-ounce glass of water with every 12-ounce beer or 4 to 6 ounces of liquor, for example.

does alcohol dehydrate you

Diluting a vodka with soda will also mean it’s more hydrating overall, though it’ll still have diuretic effects. Drinks with a higher alcohol content — and therefore more potential to dry you out — include vodka, gin, rum, and whisky. Beer and wines, meanwhile, tend to have lower alcohol content, though fortified wines like sherry and Madeira pack a kick at above 14.5% alcohol. If you don’t feel better from drinking plain water, try adding an electrolyte mix to water or drinking a low-sugar sports drink that contains electrolytes. Alcohol’s diuretic effects mean it’s difficult to avoid experiencing some level of dehydration from drinking.

Can youstay ahead of dehydration while drinking alcohol?

For many people, the possible benefits don’t outweigh the risks and avoiding alcohol is the best course. Staying hydrated when drinking alcohol is one of the best ways to avoid dehydration. Your body uses vitamin B12 to eliminate alcohol from your body and aids in breakdown of carbs.

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This is especially likely if you are not keeping up your fluid intake to make up for the lost fluid. If you are intoxicated, you may be too impaired to do simple tasks like drinking water, making rehydration more difficult. Drinks that contained electrolytes—milk and oral rehydration solutions, for example—were more hydrating after two hours compared to water. [6] In other words, subjects peed less relative to their fluid intake two hours after consuming these drinks compared to water.

Does Drinking Alcohol Make You Dehydrated?

Dehydration can also impact heart function, increasing the risk of heart attack or stroke, especially in people with pre-existing heart conditions. It impairs your kidneys’ ability to filter blood and makes them work harder. Alcohol also causes hormonal imbalances that negatively affect kidney function. Alcohol-induced dehydration can also decrease reaction time, making it more challenging to respond quickly to unexpected situations, such as sudden stops while driving or avoiding obstacles. Dehydration can reduce muscle endurance and performance, making it more challenging to sustain physical activity for an extended period.

  • Alcohol’s diuretic effects mean it’s difficult to avoid experiencing some level of dehydration from drinking.
  • Alcohol dehydrates you by entering the bloodstream and breaking down the general makeup of the body.
  • Alcohol-induced dehydration is more likely to occur if an individual drinks alcohol on an empty stomach or does not drink enough non-alcoholic fluids while consuming alcohol.
  • On the other hand, if you’re a light to moderate drinker and you’re healthy, you can probably continue to drink alcohol as long as you do so responsibly.

One probably involved craving cold water and urinating a few shades darker than normal, while the other probably involved feeling like your head was in a vice and being unwilling to get out of bed. The body can only metabolize a certain amount of alcohol every hour. How much alcohol you’re able to metabolize is dependent on your age, weight, sex, and other factors. When the body is dehydrated, skin and vital organs try to hold onto as much water as possible, leading to puffiness in the face and elsewhere. All of these calories mean that frequent drinking can lead to relatively easy weight gain. Depending on what you order or pour, just one drink might contain anywhere from fifty to several hundred calories.



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