Why Does Beer Make Me Sleepy But Not Liquor?

Beer Make Me Sleepy But Not Liquor

Regular drinkers often claim that drinking Bert makes them feel more sleepy and tired as compared to other liquors. But ever thought why?

Both alcoholic liquors and beer have alcohol that makes one dizzy and drunk. But the distinguishing factor is that beer contains hops. These hops affect both GABA as well as melatonin receptors, which cause one to feel more sleepy. 

Yearning to unleash more about how beers make you feel more sleepy than others? Then directly dig through the article as it covers all the nooks and crannies. 

What is present in Beer And Liquor? The Prime Ingredients 

The prime ingredients present in beer are:

  • Water
  • Yeast
  • Barley Malt 
  • Hop

On the other hand, the prime ingredient present in all alcoholic liquors are:

  • Ethanol 
  • Water
  • Some flavoring agent 

Additionally, some other ingredients are also present, e.g.,

  • Grains are used for whiskey
  • Grapes are used for wine
  • Juniper Berries are used for gin 

Why Do Beer and Liquor both get you a bit sleepy?

Beer Make Me Sleepy But Not Liquor

Both beer and liquor play a role in making us sleepy, tired, and exhausted. And the only culprit present in both the drinks that make them do this is none other than ethanol.

According to A. Leslie Morrow, soon after we consume alcohol, it directly impacts and slows down the functioning of our central nervous system. Actually, soon after the entrance, the small molecules of ethanol cross the blood-brain barrier and affect the way neurons work by disrupting the release of GABA A receptors.

Now, what happens is that generally, GABA molecules attach to these receptors and open the gate for the passage of chloride ions. These Cl ions cause your body to feel relaxed and sleepy. 

But when you drink beer or liquor, the alcohol in it increases the rate of Cl passage and neuron firing. Consequently, you start to feel tipsy and sleepy within no time.

That’s the effect of alcohol that is present in all alcoholic drinks, let it be beer, wine, or whiskey. 

Then why does beer make you feel more drunk? Move to the next section to unravel it.

Why Does Beer Make You More Sleepy Than Liquor?

We saw that an ingredient is present in beer that liquor lacks- hops. And they are the hidden reason why beer makes you tired more than other liquors.

Hops are flowers of Humulus lupulus, a plant of the Cannabaceae family. It is soporific and thus has been used as a sedative medicine by our elders to overcome insomnia, depression, and anxiety. 

Hops are added to beer to neutralize the taste of malt sugars added during brewing.

Moving on to the main point: How Hops makes you tired?

And the simple answer is that it affects your melatonin and GABA receptors. 

Now, let’s figure out HOW?

First of all, hops are known to increase the binding efficiency of GABA. As a result, more GABA molecules bind with the receptors, thus curbing the neutral activity and promoting sleep.

Additionally, a few studies have shown that the active ingredient of the hop was a sound affinity to bind with melatonin receptors M1 and M2. As a result, you feel even more sleepy. 

However, the exact mode of action and level of contribution to sleep arousal is yet to be found.

How Does Beer Make You Sleepy?

Now that we are well aware of the basic mode of action of beer and hops, let’s enlist a few characteristics of beer that make you even more sleepy and tired.


First of all, beer is known to act as a depressant as the alcohol and hops in it have soporific nature that helps to improve GABA efficiency and make your brain feel numb and relaxed.

But yes, it inhibits REM Sleep too.

Sedating Effect

Hops present in beer contain myrcene. It has a sedating effect that boosts the activity of GABA and, side by side, decreases glutamate activity, thus making you feel even more tired. 


Just like all alcoholic spirits and liquors, beer is also a diuretic, and thus, you end up urinating. As a result of it, there are chances of excessive dehydration, and your body starts to feel tired, exhausted, and you long for rest.

Lowers Blood Sugar Level

Last but not least, beer is known to reduce or drop one’s blood sugar level. As a result, the body starts to feel down and nod.

Do You Enjoy A Sound Sleep After Drinking Beer? The Inured Neurons

Well, No.

Although drinking beer makes you tired and sleepy more than other alcoholic liquors, it doesn’t let you enjoy a long, peaceful sleep.

The reason is that it wakes you before time and is again due to GABA receptors.

So, what happens is that due to the increased efficiency of GABA, a time comes when these GABA receptors become inured.

As a result, the passage of chloride ions gets stopped, thus making your body awake from the state of rest and instead inducing a weird restlessness and headache.

How To Drink Beer To Avoid Sleep Issues?

Last, let’s enlist a few ways to help you avoid such sleep issues. 

The best way to opt for it is to stop drinking beer. Instead, you can opt for non-alcoholic drinks like mocktails that taste equally well without harming the body or inducing sleep. 

However, if that isn’t possible for you now, you should start practicing the following tips:

  • Drink beer in moderation so that you don’t end up being sleepy and overrelaxed every day.
  • Drink lots of fluid before and after beer consumption. It keeps the body from getting dehydrated. 
  • Always have a good meal or some healthy snacks before drinking beer so that it gets absorbed slowly and, thus, makes you less drunk.
  • Additionally, it is better to drink potassium and protein-rich food like eggs and chicken. 


All in all, yes, beer makes you more sleepy while other liquors don’t or very less. The reason is that beers contain hops in addition to alcohol. Both ingredients stimulate the efficiency of GABA receptors and thus make you feel more sleepy and tired. 

However, later, the GABA receptors become inured, and thus, you end up having a disturbing nap full of restlessness.

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