Before heading to a bar, use this infographic to brush up on the short- and long-term effects of alcohol and booze responsibly

We all like a drink of alcohol every now and then, but have you ever wondered what exactly happens when you down that vodka cran? After all, you can probably feel the alcohol working on your body. As it turns out, almost every part of the body is altered when you consume that glass of wine, beer or cocktail. (Find out How Alcohol Messes with Your Fitness Goals.)

Obviously, the magnitude to which alcohol affects you depends on factors like gender, genetics, weight and so forth-and the more you drink, the stronger the effects. From messing with your brain (where alcohol depresses behavioral inhibitory center in the cerebral cortex, which causes you to process information much s-l-o-w-e-r, and dulls the the nerve centers controlling sexual function in the hypothalamus) to your actual body (where alcohol floods your bloodstream, affecting other body process while your body works to remove it from your system), the effects of that delicious cocktail last a lot longer than happy hour or a boozy brunch.

We're not saying you shouldn't enjoy a drink or two, but before the next time you raise a glass, read up so you know what to expect. Then prep yourself with our One-Day Hangover Cure, so the day after is as painless as possible. Cheers!