Substance Use

Does Milk Help You Sober Up?

young man drinking glass of milk

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Does Milk Help You Sober Up?

Milk does a body good, but it won’t help you sober up or relieve you from a high or hangover. However, milk does provide a few benefits that can alleviate symptoms of intoxication. Milk contains mineral-rich water, which supports healthy fluid and electrolyte levels. This counteracts dehydration caused by excessive drinking.

It also contains whey and casein, which bind to metals, helping to eliminate them from the system. But drinking milk, alongside other so-called hangover cures like swallowing raw eggs or increasing carbs, just masks the symptoms of being drunk, rather than helping you sober up.

Zinnia Health helps thousands of individuals overcome alcohol addiction each year. We provide treatments that tackle the cause of addiction while providing the tools you need to overcome it. If you’re ready to start the conversation, we’re here to help. Give us a call at (855) 430-9439

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Does Drinking Milk Help You Sober Up?

If you’re feeling hungover, milk can only help cure the pains of an empty stomach. It cannot neutralize the effects of alcohol.

Milk as a detoxification aid is based on traditional beliefs and theoretical conclusions. To date, no studies are pointing out the potential benefits of milk as a detoxing agent.

When alcohol enters the bloodstream, it activates the Central Nervous System. Your Central Nervous System consists of neurotransmitters regulating bodily functions like heart rate and breathing. The effects of alcohol go away once alcohol is naturally eliminated from your body.

Milk cannot speed up this process.

Milk Could Potentially be a Binding Agent

A study published in the International Journal of Molecular Science highlights the interaction of whey proteins in milk with metal ions.

Whey protein can chelate, reducing the reactivity and absorption of certain metals in the body. This binding action might reduce the absorption of certain poisons into the digestive tract. However, more scientific evidence is needed to support this claim.

Casein, a protein also found in milk, shows the potential to bind to certain heavy metals and organic compounds. However, there are no studies linking it to the reduction of alcohol toxicity.

Milk Does Have Many Health Benefits 

Even though milk won’t help you sober up, it has the potential to positively impact your health in other ways. Calcium, a mineral found in milk, is great for the bones.

According to Harvard T.H. Chan, alcohol depletes the body’s calcium stores. This increases the risk of developing osteoporosis. A glass of milk or orange juice can help improve low calcium levels, but supplementation is necessary to treat a deficiency.

Why Doesn’t Milk Help with Sobriety?

Milk doesn’t interact with the brain like alcohol. It mainly interacts with the digestive system. Alcohol, on the other hand, is absorbed into the small intestine, then the bloodstream before making its way to the brain. 

According to Learn Genetics, drugs, and alcohol take control of the brain’s reward system, causing an immense release of dopamine, followed by slowly depleting levels. This triggers an intense craving for alcohol, which is rewarded with more dopamine.

These changes occur in a part of the brain called the basal ganglia. The basal ganglia are also responsible for habit formation and motivation.

Giving into alcohol cravings teaches the basal ganglia that happiness equals getting inebriated. This is the beginning stage of Alcohol Use Disorder.

Signs of Alcohol Use Disorder include:

  • Inability to control alcohol cravings
  • Physical dependence on alcohol to feel better
  • Taking greater risks 
  • Neglected responsibilities
  • Getting into legal trouble
  • Toxicity or overdose
  • Increased alcohol tolerance
  • Financial troubles

Physical symptoms of Alcohol Use Disorder include:

  • Red eyes
  • Dilated pupils
  • Unexplained weight loss or gain
  • Strange body odor
  • Impaired coordination
  • Nervousness
  • Anxiety

It’s important to know that symptoms of AUD may overlap with other mental health disorders.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, people with addiction and mental health disorders should be treated for both simultaneously. This lessens the risk of a relapse.

Zinnia Health offers comprehensive care for those struggling with poly-substance use or co-occurring medical conditions. Call us at (855) 430-9439 to learn about our evidence-based approach to treatment.

Are There Other Ways to Sober Up At Home?

Sobering up is the process of purging alcohol from your system. Your body naturally detoxes alcohol by processing it through the liver before it’s excreted.

According to Alcohol Beverage Control, a standard drink takes an hour on average to be eliminated from the body. However, it could take longer due to slow metabolism or impaired liver function.

The best way to sober up at home is to allow the alcohol to leave your system without ingesting more. Hydrating yourself and resting can aid this process.

Eating and Drinking to Sober Up

Unfortunately, having a glass of milk cannot speed up the rate at which your body eliminates alcohol. However, alcohol has dehydrating effects, so staying hydrated is a smart idea.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drinking the recommended amount of water can also help with your general well-being and assist in eliminating toxins.

Drinking Milk for a Hangover

Drinking milk will not help you sober up once you’re drunk. However, warm milk can soothe an upset stomach and add fluids to your system. The effectiveness of milk in curing hangovers is something that requires more study.

Harvard School of Public Health states that milk consists of 87% water, which can help you rehydrate. So you can choose to drink milk instead of drinking water to rehydrate.

What If I Tried To Get Sober on My Own but Couldn’t?

According to MedlinePlus, the effects of alcohol on the brain may lead to addiction. If you attempt to get sober after repeatedly having alcoholic drinks, you might face withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can trigger you to continue drinking alcohol.

Common withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain
  • Headache
  • Sweating
  • Tremors
  • Alcohol Craving

If you notice these symptoms in yourself or a loved one, it is crucial to seek professional help.

Where to Get Help for Alcohol Addiction

Professional treatment is essential to overcoming addiction. Zinnia Health’s comprehensive approach to addiction includes one-on-one therapy, group sessions, and behavioral treatments that address your individual needs. Other treatment options include medication-assisted treatment (MAT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and 12-step.

Medication-Assisted treatment offers a holistic approach to recovery. MAT combines medication with behavioral therapy, such as CBT, to address the root of addiction while providing tools to manage them.

You might feel embarrassed to ask for help; however, reaching out is an essential first step toward achieving long-lasting sobriety.

If you’re ready to take the first step towards a brighter future, contact Zinnia Health at (855) 430-9439. Together we will forge a successful path to recovery.

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