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This Is the Best In-Flight Drink, According to Science

What’s your drink of choice when flying? Maybe it’s a healthy bottle of water, a zesty bloody mary, or a sugary Coke — but whatever it is, you might want to try ginger ale next time; it’s a unique drink to have in the air, and scientists can back that up based on the scientific properties of the drink.

Ginger ale has a long history. It was invented in the 1840s and took the world by storm, both as a mixer and a standalone drink. In the 1920s, it became a bootlegger’s favorite drink, because it made their illegal hooch a bit more palatable for those imbibing. Now, it’s fallen out of its former glory on the ranked soft drinks list, but there is still one place it takes first place: the sky.

Ginger ale is the drink of choice for many on a plane, and there’s actually a scientific reason behind it. Our taste buds work differently when we’re way high up, and everything tastes just a bit duller. That means things that are typically sweet or salty don’t quite taste as powerful.

And that’s what gives ginger ale its place in the world of airplane success stories. The sweetness you taste it on the ground is dulled in the air, making it sharper and more intense—something your taste buds are probably craving in the airline world of less-than-palatable meals and snacks.

Plus, it’s good for your stomach.

“Ginger helps ease stomach upset with nervous flyers,” nutritionist Lauren Grosskopf told Travel + Leisure.

Comments are Closed.
sam737 November 13, 2019

well, it's not really "according to science" but according to a "nutritionist Lauren Grosskopf" (by the way nurtitionist is not a protected qualification, anyone can call herself 'nutritionist'), who happen to be a "Senior Principal Scientist at The Kraft Heinz Company" that manufactures, inter alia, a ginger ale. Such a coincidence!

allbrosca November 11, 2019

I have long heard that Tomato Juice was the one that tasted better in the air. Personally I go for Clamato juice or a spicy Bloody Caesar (clamato, vodka, etc. - very popular in Canada!) which I can generally only get on Air Canada

snidely November 8, 2019

I always have tomato juice. (Never drink it anywhere else. Started years ago because it seemed to be healthiest drink. BTW, is there a Diet ginger ale?

HiAperture November 8, 2019

azmojo, adding Jack Daniels does the trick for me.

azmojo November 8, 2019

How do you catch a buzz with ginger ale?