back to article Kiwi boffins prove that booze makes you clever

At last, scientists have delivered conclusive proof of what many people instinctively knew - booze makes you clever. Top boffins at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, by studying the mental performance of specially-created transgenic rats well supplied with drink, have found that moderate daily alcohol intake conferred " …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Tim Greenwood

    Cliff was right!

    Cliff's theory of the survival of the fittest brain cells now seems to be proven. The theory ran that alcohol kills brain cells, but of course it kills off the weak and unhealthy brain cells first (much as happens with grazing animals on the plains of Africa). This leaves just the fit, healthy and active brain cells left to run all your systems. Obviously the overconsumption of alcohol kills off more than just the weak cells and so gets the good ones which you need. This is also born out by this new study.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Up yours Gordon (now Alaistair)

    What good news, I can stop feeling guilty about my 1 pint/1 scotch a day habit !

    I for one don't give two hoots what the tax on alcohol is. I brew my own beer and wine, and distill my own spirits[1]. So up yours ugly.

    [1]For UK readers, yes, I *know* it's illegal, but as long as they teach chemisty and physics they have a hard time stopping it. In the meantime, I'm sure there are lots of people who like to distill their own water ......

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Finally a solid excuse to tell the missus why i'm always late home after a detour to the pub "but love, i'm keeping my intelligence up, you dont want me to become a moron do you?"

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Endless fountain of well-being

    Alcohol under all its forms is continuously being proven to remedy many ailments. Cholesterol, heart conditions, and now, stupidity. Could it be that the Fountain of Youth is actually at the bottom of my bottle of Vodka ?

    I'll let you know when I get there.

  5. Phil

    Proof at last

    No wonder I'm so damn brainy...

  6. Robert McCracken

    Drunk rats

    1. I want a job where I can electrocute drunk rats.

    2. Research now has to be done to find out if Real Ale is better for your brain power than Cider.

    3. If this is the case then I should have a IQ of about 200

  7. john mann

    @Proof at last

    ITYM "40o proof at least".

    Hope this helps.....;o)

  8. Bob Appleyard

    Ballmer Peak?

    Is the optimum between 0.129% and 0.138%?

  9. Paul

    So remember - drinking is for happy occasions, not sad ones.

    Like finishing work for the day?

  10. Alan Donaly

    Great news!

    I need to get on this right away.

  11. Tom

    Anyone mind if I still prefer my airline pilots sober?


  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Being clever used to be free

    >"But having no booze is bad too; which means that po-faced killjoys who want to put up the already outrageous grog taxes are effectively saying that only the rich can be clever."

    Haven't they already sorted this by stopping student grants and introducing aleatory fees. Thankfully I was at university under the watchful and caring eye of Margaret Thatcher instead of the current right wing fascist Governement.

  13. English Bob

    Call me Bruce - it will avoid confusion

    Immanuel Kant was a real pissant

    Who was very rarely stable.

    Heidegger, Heidegger was a boozy beggar

    Who could think you under the table.

    David Hume could out-consume

    Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, [some versions have 'Schopenhauer and Hegel']

    And Wittgenstein was a beery swine

    Who was just as schloshed as Schlegel.

    There's nothing Nietzsche couldn't teach ya

    'Bout the raising of the wrist.

    Socrates, himself, was permanently pissed.

    John Stuart Mill, of his own free will,

    On half a pint of shandy was particularly ill.

    Plato, they say, could stick it away--

    Half a crate of whisky every day.

    Aristotle, Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle.

    Hobbes was fond of his dram,

    And René Descartes was a drunken fart.

    'I drink, therefore I am.'

    Yes, Socrates, himself, is particularly missed,

    A lovely little thinker,

    But a bugger when he's pissed.

    (Yes, I know New Zealand isn't Australia, but when national stereotyping is involved accuracy goes out the window)

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The mechanism is thought to be that by slightly stressing the individual you cause repair process to function (at the cellular level). In that regard it doesn't need to be alcohol that causes the stress.


  15. Gareth Jones

    Bad Control group

    If they gave the "control" group tea and fruit juice they've given them caffeine. Surely that destroys their reliability as a control....? Without a proper control group you can't state that drinking no alcohol makes you less able than moderate drinking because it may be the caffeine in the tea that causes the impairment.

  16. Mike Moyle

    Re: ‘Guiness-Genius ’

    @y Anonymous Vulture

    "Finally a solid excuse to tell the missus why i'm always late home after a detour to the pub 'but love, i'm keeping my intelligence up, you dont want me to become a moron do you?'"

    If you actually exprct the missus to BUY that, I'm afraid it may already be too late for you.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Surely over time this will do quite a sum of damage to your liver? I attempt to avoid alcohol at all costs. Mainly due to the fact once metabolized by the liver creates a substance far more poisonous to my body than what I took in...The fact it's cancinogenic and causes brain damage is also a big factor.

    Maybe It's because my heart is a shriveled up black mass of doom, but I certainly would rather to have my brain intact and a lessened chance of cancer than have improved emotional memory which to be quite frank, is useless to me.

  18. Tawakalna

    but I don't drink... I must be really stupid :(

  19. Luther Blissett

    Rats do mazes ok

    And now we know they get drunk. But can they do sudoku? That's supposed to be good for the brain. Coding too, Can rats code in C++?

    Duh, what else... I seem to have forgotten.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re. Hmm...

    You didn't read the article fully... the rats that overindulged may have had 'improved emotional memory', but it was the rats that imbibed moderately that had improved concentration. Surely 1 or 2 drinks a day don't have that toxic an effect on the liver. You can't totally avoid alcohol anyway. Many foods you eat contain small amounts of alcohol from fermentation, or gain a small amount from the digestion process. Alcohol is such a common substance in nature and in biological processes, that it may well be that our bodies are not only used to it, but benefit from it in small amounts. Even water is bad for you if you drink too much of it.

  21. Del Merritt

    @Ballmer Peak

  22. david


    i could swear i saw this news bit on fark a couple years ago.

    almost exactly the same story.

    way to go reg, you're really staying current.

  23. Rich Harding

    @English Bob

    Ah, but can you sing it first take?:

    Click "Members" and then on my ugly mug :D

    Misplaced Bruce

  24. Peter Gray

    Bad news for me...

    ... because I am allergic to alcohol - one drink and it's hospital time, which doesn't seem so smart...

  25. Morely Dotes

    Re: Rats do mazes OK

    "Can rats code in C++?"

    Have you ever seen Windows ME?

    Case closed.

  26. yeah, right.

    Evolution in action.

    Sure. Kill the old, slow brain cells and soon enough only the fast, healthy ones remain.

    Now, where's that rhum?

  27. Mr Larrington

    @Luther Blissett

    "Can rats code in C++?"

    They still use RATFOR.

    Has anyone seen my coat?

  28. Brett Weaver

    Liver? Oh puleese....

    Its sad if you are allergic to alcohol,

    or have cultural or societal reasons to avoid it.

    I raise my glass in silent salute to those...

    Always be drunk.

    That's it!

    The great imperative!

    In order not to feel

    Time's horrid fardel

    bruise your shoulders,

    grinding you into the earth,

    Get drunk and stay that way.

    On what?

    On wine, poetry, virtue, whatever.

    But get drunk.

    And if you sometimes happen to wake up

    on the porches of a palace,

    in the green grass of a ditch,

    in the dismal loneliness of your own room,

    your drunkenness gone or disappearing,

    ask the wind,

    the wave,

    the star,

    the bird,

    the clock,

    ask everything that flees,

    everything that groans

    or rolls

    or sings,

    everything that speaks,

    ask what time it is;

    and the wind,

    the wave,

    the star,

    the bird,

    the clock

    will answer you:

    "Time to get drunk!

    Don't be martyred slaves of Time,

    Get drunk!

    Stay drunk!

    On wine, virtue, poetry, whatever!"

    -- Charles Baudelaire

  29. Mark Roome

    Re: @Luther Blissett

    Is that after they upgrade from logo?

    @Tim Greenwood: I am glad I am not the only one who is a Cliff and Norm fan. Norms beer gags are still the best, I have a list of them somewhere, I must dig them out.

  30. Matt Eagles

    Other effects of Alcohol to scientifically confirm......

    I'm just waiting for experiments that prove that alcohol makes me much funnier and attractive to the opposite sex.

  31. Martin Benson

    @Matt Eagles

    >>I'm just waiting for experiments that prove that alcohol makes me much funnier and attractive to the opposite sex.

    That's already been scientifically proved. It's just that the members of the opposite sex have to drink the alcohol, rather than you.

  32. JMcL


    Is it a mere coincidence that while I was reading this and being generally enthusiastic about the results that Winamp on random launched into the Pogues?

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "I'm just waiting for experiments that prove that alcohol makes me much funnier and attractive to the opposite sex."

    It depends who's doing the drinking!

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I like good food too

    Which also suffers from the law of diminishing returns. After you have eaten a certain amount the incremental pleasure from each additional bite diminishes. Fortunately with food we don't get too sloshed to become impervious to the fact that this phenomenon is occurring.

  35. Richard

    New Zealand's greatest contribution to science since Rutherford!!!

    Now if only I good get a decent pint here.....

This topic is closed for new posts.