to make the link between drinking alcohol and the need to pee. So why exactly does drinking alcohol make us need to pee more than when we drink soft drinks or water? БAlcohol is a diuretic,Б says Professor Oliver James, Head of Clinical Medical Sciences at Newcastle University. БIt acts on the kidneys to make you pee out much more than you take in Б which is why you need to go to the toilet so often when you drink. Б In fact for every 1g of alcohol drunk, urine excretion increases by 10ml. Alcohol also reduces the production of a hormone called vasopressin, which tells your kidneys to reabsorb water rather than flush it out through the bladder. With the body\’s natural signal switched off, the bladder is free to fill up with fluid. Find out if you\’re drinking too much with our Self Assessment tool. A common side effect of drinking is needing the toilet just five minutes after your last visit. This irritating experience (usually known as \’breaking the seal\’) happens because alcohol delivers a hefty double whammy to your kidneys. \”Suppose you have a pint at lunchtime,\” explains Oliver. \”At some point you\’ll need to go to the toilet and get rid of the pint of liquid you\’ve just drunk.
Then, an hour later, you\’ll have to pee again because of the added diuretic effect. \” With fluid leaving your body so quickly, dehydration can be a big problem. Though it might seem like even more liquid is the last thing you need when youБre having to dash to the gents/ladies, regular sips of water during and after drinking are what you need to keep yourself hydrated. б Use our Unit and calorie Calculator to see how many units are in your drinks. Alcoholic drinks with less volume wonБt stop the need to pee! Switching to alcoholic drinks with less volume, such as shots, won\’t stem the flow either. ThatБs because whether you\’re drinking pints or doing shots, it\’s the diuretic element of the alcohol which is key to producing all that wee.
Does weeing all the alcohol out of my system help prevent a hangover? Unfortunately not. б Because alcohol promotes peeing, it can lead to dehydration, which causes the nausea and headache associated with bad hangovers. It\’s also why your mouth might feel like the driest place on earth the next day. Want to learn more about your hangovers? (1) Eggleton MG, БThe diuretic action of alcohol in manБ,J Physiol 1942, vol. 101, pp. 172-191. Available at: Two reasons, though I don t know much about alcohol but the principle holds in general. Drinking a large amount of water (a large component of alcohol) activates receptors in the body that signal the filtration of MORE water than usual out of the body. This is done to account for the larger intake of water. Everything in the body must be balanced. Not too much water, not too little water. Another thing is particles in alcohol. There is a physical phenomenon called Osmosis.
In short, osmosis is the transfer of water between containers. The transfer of water goes from the container with lower concentration of particles per volume of water to higher concentration of particles per volume. The net effect is the lower concentration becomes a higher concentration due to loss of water, and the higher concentration becomes a lower concentration due to intake of water. Eventually, both containers will reach the same concentration. With the intake of alcohol, you increase the number of particles into your bloodstream. These particles are filtered out by your kidneys. Because the kidneys have a higher concentration of particles than normal, it will drag out more water (by osmosis) than normal from your bloodstream. This increase of water extraction into the kidneys causes a larger volume of pee. Substances that make you pee more because you drink them are called Diuretics. Same with coffee, as coffee is a diuretic.