Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Alcohol and Inhibition

WineFor some enjoying and drinking are synonyms. If it is a party, vacation, cruise, casino, restaurant, flight, weekend at home or a Friday night out, indulging in alcoholic beverages defines the fun. Probably there is a bigger variety of alcoholic drinks than soft drinks. What does alcohol do to us? A large number of people seem to enjoy alcohol in moderation. But alcohol and I don’t get along well. Even a small glass of low alcoholic beer has sleep inducing effect on me besides being disagreeable to my taste buds. For non drinkers like me, it is hard to perceive or realize the delight that alcohol offers.

Often I hear a glass of red wine keeps the heart healthy. But hardly anyone stops at one and of course no one mentions the effect of subsequent glasses.

Another theory I am told is alcohol makes us mentally liberated and it relaxes the brain. Probably some use this ‘mental’ freedom to break rules and disregard social manners.

Recently a study concluded that drinking in office parties can lead to embarrassment. Reasoning

The brain learns to compensate for the inhibition lowering effects of alcohol when in a familiar setting, such as a pub or at home with friends, they discovered. However, if they drink in an unfamiliar environment such as the workplace, where they are usually sober and focused, drinkers do not benefit from tolerance and lose control of their inhibitions.”

Though I agree that drinking in office parties can lead to embarrassment, without doing any statistical analysis, my feeling is the reasoning is not correct. It is hard to imagine a systematic study in a pub that typically has atmosphere of deafening music, careless crowd, low light, noise, and loud senseless conversations. Even zero inhibition goes unnoticed on a pub. On the other hand, workplace parties usually have a large number of non drinkers and social etiquettes are noticed so drinkers are likely to restrain themselves and not lose control.

Being a non drinker that accompanied friends at pubs and colleagues at work related parties; I did not see any difference in the ‘inhibition lowering effects’ of alcohol though I do notice change in behavior based on amount of consumption. Familiar or unfamiliar environment, the effect of alcohol varies based on the quantity.

What do you think?

What does alcohol do and does it matter where it is consumed – in familiar or unfamiliar setting?

39 comments:

  1. True. Alcohol does not agree with a lot of people as well. Some call it 'life' while i feel it ends up one on his/her death bed. -Swetha Amit )Whirlwindthoughts)

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  2. well..i dont drink so cannot say anything about that :(

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  3. I was working as a Sales Manager and one company had this habit of taking all their Sales managers to a Pub (once in a month). Its actually dangerous. People start blurting what they actually think about other people/ issues in hand, and that's exactly what the management wanted to know!

    Being a non-drinker, I was just observing because there was nothing else to do! And oh, I did learn the art of drinking a Sprite just like a Gin - The style I mean :)

    Destination Infinity

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  4. Well u know i don't drink so can't say!

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  5. Alcohol does different things to different people.
    Some handle it very well whereas some make a fool of themselves.

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  6. I can handle only one glass of wine, cocktail etc. Anything more and I get a terrible hangover. I love stuff like marguerita and pina colada. But, I have never got drunk. Yes, some people tend to make complete fools of themselves with their speech slurring and make repetitive, loud comments. It can be quite hilarious to watch :). Familiar settings and peer pressure makes one drink more for sure. And drinking after driving is a strict no no.

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  7. A non-drinker myself, I'm too much of a control freak and the very thought of not being totally 100% in control scares me.

    You mention that there are probably more alcholoc beverarages that non-alcoholic ones out there - very true. What really annoys me is the fact that in a restaurant/pub etc here in England we pay as much if not more for a soft drink such as cola making it an almost cheaper evening for those who wish to drink alcohol and do so because it is cheaper.

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  8. no idea. havent yet drunk anything ever. but i am sure i will find out for myself one day & will start the discovery with a shot of tequila ;)

    but sathya is a big time KF beer loyalist & says he loves the taste & drinks more in the company of friends & can easily handle a couple of bottles :)))

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  9. i think a lot of things matter - location, state of mind and personal capacity. But I think very few people can handle it well!

    ♡ from © tanvii.com

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  10. i dont drink so do not know.
    But if someone drinks he or she should see that their kids understand the culture of drinking and importance of one Peg or Spoon they should be educated about limited drinking.

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  11. ...I think..it depends on every individual n Capacity,,,My husband drinks in moderation at social gathering and official parties his behaviour is always nice.. more or less..
    I have seen people who get tipsy Jus after second drink..n blabbering for no reason..
    Women some cant handle and start laughing loudly.. making every one stare at them...
    I don't drink...and may be never in life..thou my friends and relatives women do...I jus dot like the taste!
    its ..not ..environment But an individual that matters after he consumes alcohol.

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  12. Such amazing post. You said each word that I actually feel.
    I am a non drinker too. and feel exactly the same way as you do.
    I never thought that you are a non drinker too. Hats off to you for that. Your marks are rising up with each post.

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  13. I appreciate all the points mentioned here.
    I was a very regular drinker and it was 24x7.Drinking smoking are two habits where one cant reduce intake.You either drink or you dont.
    Overnight I gave up drinking

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  14. I have noticed that many people do something that they always wanted to do but couldnt when sober, so in the guise of drinking they do..still I havent seen a single person who doesnt recognise his mother or sister or misbehaves with them,and it makes me feel that they understand everything but still do that because they want to:)

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  15. Many people loose their sense of reasoning after consuming alcohol. May be because they take too much. I am not against those who enjoy it but they need to make sure that they do not turn a nuisance to those nearby. I have seen good guys turning to pitiable junks after drinking more than they could handle...Even the amount of alcohol they can handle safely, they seem to misjudge...

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  16. Very nice write up, indeed. I may confess that I have found myself somewhat disadvantaged for being a non-drinker. I do like to talk write and discuss about this manna .
    May I refer you to two of my write-ups on liquor, wine or alcohol- whatever may choose to call it !
    http://aarkay-musings.blogspot.com/2011/02/daru-or-dawa.html
    http://aarkay-musings.blogspot.com/2010/10/gift-of-nature-or.html

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  17. yes a very good write up- I don't drink so I think I can't bring much to this conversation...although, I have been around people who imbibe more than they should and it has always confirmed in my mind NOT to drink because I never want something to control me to an extent that I will say or do things I regret later.

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  18. hii

    it depends upon the person but I have read that prolonged use of alcohol is fatal for potency powers

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  19. I drink alocohol to relax mostly, Not a heavy drinker but can do so too when in a happy mood or long lost friends meet up ...

    I do think that people take advantage of the fact that they have ahd a few , They sometimes deliberately do silly things which they wont otherwise ...

    I drink to ENJOY not otherwise .. depends what others do some drink for the sake of it , and some drink for company and some to do silly things ...

    I smile at people who have been drunkards all the time and then give advice how its bad ..

    a lot depends how and where one drinks tooo.. I see a lot of things on the road on a friday night :)

    Bikram's

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  20. I don't drink.. But have been with a group of frens a couple of times to drive the drunk lots back home.. However I love the way people loose it completely, though not many instances I can remember one totally ridiculous episode of a friend not leaving the restaurant until he was served with an extra plate of biriyani. Waiter had already served one plate which this friend of mine denied having eaten. :) :)

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  21. Both me and my husband are non drinkers and so are most of our close friends.Expect for our dental conference dinners there are no other occasions where alcohol is served.

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  22. My organization has beer bash every Friday. Unlimited supply of beers :) Its the culture since the company started and we dont want to quit it. That said, I dont drink. Its fun to watch people after they have gulped couple of bottles :)

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  23. i love a drink of vodka when i have to go dancing that is mostly a once in six months affair and now even less post my daughter...it helps me dance without making me look stupid and worrying about it!

    however i do not understand the "need" to drink every weekend or feel something is missing or the fact that often people don't stop beyond the 1!

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  24. I have no knowledge on this but have seen some colleagues losing their moorings even after a peg or two while there were a few who consumed endless cups and still were sober talking sensibly.I think the effect varies from individual to individual.

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  25. Dear all,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. My intention was not to ask your personal preference on alcohol but I do appreciate sharing it. My main goal was see if someone can help me understand the effect on human body & brain and I got some better idea. Thanks.

    @Swetha,

    Yes. I agree some love it and some just cannot stand it. Thanks

    @Muhammad, @Ria, @NRIGirl,

    Agreed. It is hard to figure out unless one has seen both sides.

    @Rajesh,

    LOL@Style. Agreed, it is so boring to watch people drinking.

    @Alka, @Tanvi, @Harman

    Yes. I agree.

    @Rachna,

    Thanks for sharing your personal preference. So you are the one who stops at the right time.

    @Tracy,

    Yes. Soft drinks are equally expensive. That is silly. Thanks

    @Sujatha,

    Don’t try if you have not. Everything that shine is not gold. That is my opinion.

    @SM,

    Yes. That is another perspective. Thanks for bringing it up.

    @Kiran,

    Thanks. I do not drink.

    @BK,

    Thanks for sharing your personal story here. Really I mean it.

    @Renu,

    That is very very interesting point. I think it is intentional. Just talk showing to be under influence but actually they are not. Bikram also said something similar.

    @Stranger,

    Yes. I agree.

    @aarkay,

    Thanks for the compliment. So you are in the same boat like me.

    @Anjuli,

    Thanks. That is exactly I am. I don’t want to be intoxicated and stay in senses.

    @AS,

    I believe you are right. Thanks.

    @Bikram,

    Thanks for candid comments here. What does ‘enjoy’ mean? That is what I am trying to figure out. Renu also stated something similar about people just pretending to be drunk.

    @Anonymous,

    Thanks.

    @Ashwini,

    So you love it when people lost it. You enjoy at their cost. Glad I don’t drink and lose it 

    @Kavita,

    Glad to know. Most social gatherings here seem to have alcohol.

    @Insignia,

    Seems like Ashwini, you enjoy watching them lose. )

    @Suruchi,

    Oh my god Vodka. I think that is pretty strong. But I got your reasoning.  Thanks for sharing.

    @KPS,

    I agree. Thanks for stopping by.

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  26. I think the threshold of a person and age matters the most when it comes to influence.

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  27. Silence.... Just making my presence felt.... :)

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  28. Hi,
    When i will post a article on antimatter i will inform you.
    thanks for reminding.

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  29. Late marker...but want to say something...

    Alcohol liberated my brother from this world. Very sad indeed...I would say don't touch even a drop. Still the repercussions have not ended...

    A, I am going to conduct an exhibition, my jewellery soon hence a bit irregular. Shall be away for 10 days.
    see you..

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  30. I have seen people who drink more than a limit, behave funnily! I wonder if we should give importance to what they utter at that stage.

    Somebody asked me to taste champaigne and I still remember the bitter taste!

    Parties with workplace colleagues is dangerous!

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  31. My husband is a seasoned drinker, however, maybe because he drinks practically everyday and makes it point to take small drinks, I have never seen speak unnecessarily or behave in a loud/ abusive manner.
    Whereas we have an uncle, who too is a seasoned drinker, who drinks so much and very quickly that after one drink itself he will start blabbering, and start walking without any kind of balance. I can't stand such people. He has severe heart problem yet he can't stop himself from drinking and also smoking.
    I have seen people like him getting drunk very quickly and making a fool of themselves.
    I have found it mainly in people who are always controlled by someone in their house, so either they go out and drink or they drink heavily in some party or get together.
    I also had another uncle who was very old, he would drink every night, but only 2 small, like my husband he used to be always normal.
    So it all depends on different person, on how and why they take to drinking.

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  32. i like the people who enjoy being in circle

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  33. Drinks.. actually have nothing to do with familiar or unfamiliar location. I don't think a person who is drunk is in a position to even judge where he is at that moment.
    Anything done in moderation is okay.

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  34. I think enjoy means enjoying the drink. When u take alcohol moderately you feel something nice but you are under control. Just a little upbeat...am I right Bikram?
    This amount may vary person to person. 1 peg may be enough for some and for others 2. Definitely not more than 2 according to me..

    Even food, you can eat to enjoy it or you can over eat and get an indigestion. I always stop eating when I feel that I can eat a little more. My Grandmother used to say that we should always make sure that there is some empty space in our stomach...Oh Gosh..now I told you all the secret of my slim physique.. ...

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  35. being a teetotaler don't have any idea about its taste and all but as you said i have also seen people driving themselves into embarrassing situations after consuming alcohol....and personally i don't agree one should drink alcohol on regular basis because it relaxes the brain moreover i think that this logic is given because "PEENE WAALE KO PEENE KA BAHAANA CHAAHIYE".....

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  36. now now now..I drink wine on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays..and I stop after one glass!

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  37. Liked your blog. I have added it to my Feedly list. I hail from Kerala which is notorious for being the largest alcohol consuming state in India. Alcohol like anything else is enjoyable in moderation. But not all of us have the will power to stop after one peg.

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