Alcohol is the common term given for ethanol or ethyl alcohol. There are different types of alcohol. Only the ethanol variant is used in our drinks. This form of alcohol is a chemical substance produced from the fermentation of sugars by yeast. These sugars are sourced from foods rich in starch, such as maize, wheat, molasses, barley and potatoes.
Alcoholic drinks, like wine, beer, cider and spirits, typically contain 1% to 50% of ethanol by volume. Alcoholic drinks sometimes feel like a stimulant (or even hallucinogen in some cases), but alcohol is actually a depressant. It inhibits the release of neurotransmitters in the brain, which slows down our normal bodily responses - if you’ve ever experienced slurred speech after drinking, that’s down to alcohol inhibiting your neurotransmitters. But excessive alcohol can affect every system and part of the body. Learn more facts about drinking below.
Find out more:
How much drink is too much
Short-term effects of alcohol
Long-term effects of alcohol