As nicotine and alcohol use often go hand in hand, new study tries to reveal how cigarettes could help fighting alcohol consumption side-effects
Study findings, reported in the Journal of Neurochemistry, show that nicotine acts through the fore-brain to suppress the sleepiness sensation linked to alcohol use. Researchers hope their new study will help heavy drinkers and smokers, but also people with smoking associated mental illnesses such as schizophrenia.
The study results showed that rats exposed to alcohol had longer sleeping rates, when compared to those exposed to nicotine, that showed less alcohol-induced sleepiness.
Study lead author, Professor Mahesh Thakkar, director of research in the MU School of Medicine’s Department of Neurology, states:
“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 fore-brain.”
Also, by studying body chemical reactions of smokers and drinkers, researchers hope to develop a way of curbing alcohol and nicotine addiction.
According to the World Health Organization data, the Europeans are top leaders when it comes to tobacco and alcohol use. WHO wars that heavy smoking and alcohol drinking could cause obesity, DNA changes, premature aging, stroke, cardiovascular, lung, liver disease and could finally lead to cancer or premature death.