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Diet Soda Mixers Up Breathalyzer Readings

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Diet soda may help or hinder attempts to lose weight. But it definitely can get you drunker. Because a drink made from alcohol and a diet mixer boosts breathalyzer readings higher than the same drink with a sugary mixer, according to a new study. The finding was published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. For the study, 16 casual drinkers knocked back one of three drinks: vodka mixed with sugary soda, vodka mixed with sugar-free soda, or a placebo beverage. Over three different sessions, each participant received each drink. After finishing the drink, the subjects were given breathalyzer tests and reaction time measurements. Participants also did a self-assessment in which they estimated their own drunkenness, tiredness and willingness to drive. When both men and women drank vodka with the diet mixer, their breath alcohol levels were on average 18 percent higher than when they consumed the alcohol with full-calorie soda mixers. And their reaction times were slower. Although a diet mixer impaired the subjects more, they rated themselves as not being any drunker. So if you’re watching your weight, be sure to watch out for what you drink.

Source: Scientific American

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