Beer makes me sleepy is a recurrent topic in many beer lover forums. Beer is the last thing that you would associate with drowsiness; however, there is a correlation. Discover how alcohol and sleep link in this article that includes findings you have surely never heard before.
Keep reading to find out why beer specifically is a prominent culprit in making people sleepy.
Why Does Beer Make Me Sleepy: The Reasons Behind It
Beer, in particular, is a common culprit in making people feel sleepy after drinking a significant quantity. The reason why beer does this to people is due to the hops. Hops are a crucial component in making beer and according to doctors; it causes sleepiness. People drinking beer with large quantities of hops like ales and lagers among others are more susceptible to drowsiness.
Hops cause sleepiness or that feeling of relaxation because they boost levels of GABA in the brain. GABA, which is an inhibitory transmitter, slows down neural activity in the nervous system thus boosting calmness and relaxation.
Sleep doctors usually combine hops and valerian to assist those with sleep and anxiety problems. Therefore, the more hops in your beer, the more likely you’ll feel sleepy or tired.
Since alcohol already offers a relaxing feeling on its own, the addition of hops is a recipe for some good sleep.
Alcohol Makes Me Sleepy: How Alcohol and Sleep Correlate
Regardless of whether you consume spirits or beer, that sleepy feeling can still affect you. This is mostly because alcoholic drinks affect GABA-A receptors in the brain indirectly.
Considered an agonist to the major neurotransmitter GABA, alcohol binds to the receptors and then replicates their activities, which causes one to feel relaxed or tired. By binding the receptors, alcohol obstructs neural signaling, thus making you feel extremely tired after drinking alcohol.
Drinking too much alcohol can overstimulate the GABA pathways resulting in the tranquilization of the nervous system. That is why people who drink too much end up with desensitized GABA receptors, which lead to alcohol withdrawal symptoms because the brain is unable to regulate the receptors.
Beer Makes Me Tired: How To Avoid Alcohol-Related Sleepiness
– Drink In Moderation
There is no proven way to escape alcohol-related sleepiness, but you can try to mitigate the effects. If you love drinking, moderation is the way to go. You don’t want to have too much alcohol at once and end up being overly relaxed.
– Keep Hydrating
You won’t stop drinking simply because it makes you feel sleepy, but you can try to reduce the impact of alcohol on your body. While out drinking, get a bottle of water and place it next to you. Alternating between drinking beer and water will help you keep hydrated.
Drinking water assists in lowering your blood alcohol content and hence, serious hangovers. Make a habit out of drinking water while indulging in alcohol and keep your organs functioning optimally.
– Select Your Drinks
Consider the drinks you select especially if you frequently become sleepy when you drink. Apart from checking the alcohol content and hops, consider the carbonation of the drink.
You should know that there are beers with aggressive levels of carbon dioxide that influence the body to take up more alcohol. Highly carbonated alcoholic drinks increase internal pressure in the stomach forcing more alcohol intake through the stomach lining into the bloodstream.
So, you should steer clear of excessively hoppy beers even though they offer delicious bitterness. If you cannot stay away, avoid having too many so that you don’t wake up with a drum for a head. You can also try a less hoppy beer and you might even discover a new style of beer you’ll like.
– Line the Stomach
Drinking on an empty stomach is usually a bad idea especially if consuming large amounts of alcohol. The kind of food you ingest matters because you want your body to regain vitamins lost through urination. You need potassium-rich foods such as bananas, and also protein-rich foods such as chicken, eggs, and carbohydrates.
This is because eating well before you drink reduces the chances of a bad hangover and protects your stomach lining from the corrosive nature of spirits.
– Keep Busy
Sitting as drowsiness hits aggravates the feeling; you might as well lay your head down and sleep. If you are in an environment where you can stand, keep active instead of sitting to give your body something else to focus on rather than the drowsiness. Dancing is a particularly preferred way to get rid of that sleepy feeling, but if you cannot, just engage in some lively conversation to distract you.
Moreover, those drinking during the day should avoid standing in the sun for too long. Find some shade because the heat produced by the sun amplifies intoxication. The more intoxicated you get, the more tired you’ll feel.
– Active Yeast
To avoid tiredness after drinking beer, you could try consuming active yeast. It is a strange one, but many people vouch that it works. Using Fleischmann’s yeast is highly recommended because it possesses Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a yeast strain that breaks down alcohol. Since the taste of dry yeast is not pleasant, mix it in with yogurt, and ingest it before drinking.
Waking Up Prematurely After Experiencing Alcohol Induced Sleep
When the sleep comes, it is a storm sending you to dreamland on an express ticket, but a couple of hours later, you are wide awake – why is that?
Well, this is because the alcohol interrupted normal functions of the receptors, so when the alcohol level goes down, the inured receptors retreat into the neuron.
Thus, no chloride ions can pass through the membrane. This means that normal functions try re-establishing and that is why you wake up feeling buzzed or wired.
How Alcohol-Induced Sleep Affects Your Dreams
As you wade in the alcohol-induced sleep, it is good to know what else is happening in your brain. Alcohol alters your sleep pattern and that contributes to why you wake up feeling tired. The REM stage is vital because that is where dreams occur. When you are deep asleep, your body can relax more, process the required information, and wake up refreshed.
Drinking alcohol reduces the time your brain spends in the REM stage, which is responsible for brain restorative sleep. Also, alcohol depresses the nervous system thus increasing the stages of deep sleep.
The less time you spend in the REM stage, the fewer dreams you have, and the less time spent conducting vital restorative brain functions.
Alcohol-Related Sleep Problems
Alcohol not only affects your dreams but it can bring forth more problems. Long-term intake of alcohol can induce insomnia due to the disruption of the circadian rhythm. While alcohol helps induce sleep, too much of it desensitizes neural pathways. Insomnia does not mean you don’t sleep at all, but your sleep pattern is erratic.
Apart from insomnia, alcohol intake can also contribute to obstructive sleep apnea. A person will stop breathing for short periods while sleeping. These breathing pauses do not last a long time, just a few seconds, and regular breathing resumes. Since alcohol has a relaxing effect, you find that the throat muscles relax and collapse, making one unable to take in air.
Some Last Reminders
Remember that if you’ve noticed that any amount and any type of alcohol affects your sleep cycle, you should definitely discuss it with a healthcare professional. Whatever the reasons might be, they are the most qualified to give you advice on how to proceed with your alcohol consumption.
Falling asleep after drinking beer is not abnormal, so do not panic, and take preventative measures instead. Furthermore, the list with the gist of this article will help you out in implementing those preventative measures, along with finding the reasons why you are experiencing this drowsiness:
- Hops are responsible for you feeling tired after drinking beer
- Drinking excessively will cause you to wake up extremely tired after drinking alcohol the night before regardless of whether you were consuming different types of alcohol together
- Therefore, you should drink in moderation
- Good nutrition and hydration are good in fighting the drowsiness after-effects of alcohol
- Some people swear by consuming active yeast before going drinking, so this is another option you could try out
That brings us to the end of our article and we hope we have shared enough to answer your question. As always, make sure to drink in moderation, and the drowsiness will subside significantly.
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