Here is what happens to your body when you finish a drink in one go: 'Bottoms up!'

During a party, you can sometimes finish a drink or a bottle 'bottoms up', meaning in one go. But do you know what happens to your body when you gulp down alcohol so quickly?

Finishing your drink 'bottoms up' can have disastrous consequences for your health
© The Good Brigade / Getty Images
Finishing your drink 'bottoms up' can have disastrous consequences for your health

The excuses for celebrations are endless. It can be a birthday, a new job, or that your favourite team has just won a game. In the heat of the moment, you can want to really celebrate the occasion, and get out a cake, a few canapés, and often some beers or even champagne.

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Peer pressure might make you want to finish your whole glass in one go, often to show off. But you might want to slow down on that practice once you've read the following article. Here is what happens to your body when you decide to go 'bottoms up'.

A massive rise of alcohol levels in your blood

You don't have to be a doctor to understand that drinkingalcohol faster makes your blood alcohol level rise faster too. When you sip your beer at, say, a normal pace, your body has time to assimilate its contents gradually.

On the other hand, when you drink in one gulp, your body is suddenly overwhelmed by an avalanche of alcohol, and this makes it very difficult for it to assimilate. According to Alcool Info Service:

Drinking 'bottoms up' causes blood alcohol levels to rise faster, with no way of reversing the effects and consequences.

It's like getting on a rollercoaster with no way of getting off: once you've downed your beer at the speed of light, the effects will be felt faster than usual.

Read more:Here's why mixing alcohol with Diet Coke gets you drunk faster than regular Coke

The dangers of binge drinking

The notion of 'bottoms up' is not new, but in recent years a new phenomenon has emerged, called 'binge drinking'. According to drogues.gouv,

Binge drinking is the intentional and organized pursuit of drunkenness, often in groups and sometimes on public roads. Express drunkenness, in short.

In a column published by Knox News, Kim Pouncey, the President of Straightup Llc, a company that specializes in alcohol awareness training, explains that downing your drink in one go can cause extreme damage to your body.

Chugging wine or any alcohol quickly will allow a lot of alcohol to get into the bloodstream before the body can trigger its defense mechanism of vomiting. Since alcohol does not have to be digested, on an empty stomach alcohol travels to the small intestine, where it enters the bloodstream almost immediately
Binge drinking is extremely dangerous and no one should force you into it Blake Wisz / Unsplash

Now, since your blood alcohol level is high, so are all the dangers associated with this substance. These include ethylic coma, which can happen very quickly and, let's not forget, can be fatal. Drinking rapidly can also lead to poor coordination of movements, reduced reflexes and impaired movement. This can translate into a heightened risk of road accident if you're behind the wheel,for example.

In short, whether you're the life of the party, a professional athlete, or MPs celebrating during Covid, drinking 'bottoms up' can have consequences for your health, both in short and long term. On the face of it, drinking a beer or a shot in one go won't kill you, but don't forget these two principles:

  • No one should pressure you into finishing your drink in one go, if you don't want to.
  • Alcohol and having fun while partying are not synonymous, and in fact never have been.

Read more:This is what happens to your body when you binge-drink

This article has been translated from Gentside FR.

Sources used:


Drogues.gouv: Le binge drinking

Knox News: Kim Pouncey: All forms of chugging alcohol are dangerous to mind and body

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