A new study from the University of Exeter in Britain has claimed that Alcohol may improve memory about information learned before the drinking session began. However, the researchers are keen to stress that this limited positive effect should be considered alongside the well-established negative effects of excessive alcohol on memory and mental and physical health.
Although the cause of this effect is not yet known, the researchers explained that alcohol blocks the learning of new information. Therefore, the brain has more resources available to lay down other recently learned information into long-term memory. The Professor at the University of Exeter Celia Morgan said in a paper published in Nature journal Scientific Reports that the theory is that the hippocampus the brain are really important in memory and switches to ‘consolidating’ memories, transferring from short into longer-term memory
Researchers given word-learning task for the study to 88 drinkers from which there are 31 males and 57 females upto the 18-53 age group. All the participants were then split into two groups at random. And told either to drink as much as they liked or not to drink at all. Then next day they all did the same task again and those who had drunk alcohol remembered more of what they had learned.
Morgan said that our research not only showed that those who drank alcohol did better when repeating the word-learning task, but that this effect was stronger among those who drank more. In the second task participants were asked to look at images on a screen. And the task was completed once after the drinkers had drunk alcohol and again the following day. The results did not reveal significant differences in memory performance post-drinking.