Food Pairings 101
Yes, youll reduce calories by asking for diet soda in your rum and Coke, but you might get drunk faster. In one recent study, it took just 21 minutes for half a diet cocktail to leave the stomach and reach the small intestine, where most alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream, while the same amount of a nondiet concoction took 36 minutes. The calories provided by food or a sugary mixer slow the emptying of the stomach, so you get drunk less rapidly, says Chris Rayner, Ph.D., a gastrointestinal researcher who conducted the study at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, in South Australia. If you still want to stick with sugar-free but dont want to get the spins, have a small snack beforehand, says Rayner. A few slices of cheese and a few crackers contain a good mix of fat, protein, and carbohydrates and should help slow stomach emptying.