Re: beer for algernon

Elizabeth Childs (
Fri, 3 Sep 1999 20:47:31 -0700

> > I had a friend whose theory was that you should get good and drunk
> > whenever you have a cold. See, alcohol kills germs, right? So you
> > need to raise the alcohol level in your blood to kill the germs.
> I assume he's being facetious, but in case he's not you should
> remind him that alcohol kills /any/ cell, including the immune
> system cells needed to fight bugs. That's why you can sanitize
> a surface or an instrument with alcohol, Listerine, or bleach,
> but using any of those to treat infection doesn't work.

Yes, yes, he was joking. This is in the category of "If I add enough ice to my scotch, my body will have to expend more energy heating the ice cube than it gains from the alcohol in the scotch, and I'll lose weight." You can get all of the equations to work out on this one - if you fail to take into account the fact that food calories are actually kilocalories.