On the final Friday before Christmas 2014, alcohol sales in pubs, clubs, restaurants and hotels across the UK rose by 142 per cent, according to Public Health England and Alcohol Concern.

It appears that the UK does indeed like its Christmas merry, but what happens to your brain when you start to indulge in festive cheer?

Professor Anne Lingford-Hughes, chair in addiction biology from Imperial College London, takes us step by step through the brain chemicals are released which alter our behaviour – from the very first sip.

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