Drinking can be pretty great.
It can also be a total nightmare – you spend too much, you do stupid things (yeah, that text to your ex isn’t such a good idea now, is it?) and some of us end up having at least a couple of cigarettes during the night.
Now it’s understandable why you spend too much – that last shot can sometimes be a stellar idea – or the thing that tips you over the edge and leaves you puking into your shoes.
It’s also understandable to send a text or 10 – it was the tequila that impaired your judgement.
What most of us can’t work out, however, is why we seem to crave a cigarette when we’ve had a drink.
It makes those of us who don’t usually smoke dabble, and those of us who do smoke the occasional cigarette end up puffing away like a chimney outside. But why?
Well one study claims to have the answers.
Dr Mahesh Thakkar, the man who led the study into why people smoke when they’ve been on the booze, claimed:
One of the adverse effects of drinking alcohol is sleepiness. However, when used in conjunction with alcohol, nicotine acts as a stimulant to ward off sleep.
If an individual smokes, then he or she is much more likely to consume more alcohol, and vice-versa. They feed off one another.
We have found that nicotine weakens the sleep-inducing effects of alcohol by stimulating a response in an area of the brain known as the basal forebrain.
By identifying the reactions that take place when people smoke and drink, we may be able to use this knowledge to help curb alcohol and nicotine addiction.
The stats don’t lie – 85 per cent of Americans who are alcohol dependent are also nicotine dependent – showing a clear correlation between the two.
That being said, those people may well just have the addictive gene, and subsequently might well indulge in a few other ill-advised pass times too.