Metabolism of Alcohol and Your BAC – What Every Illinois Driver Should Know

 Posted on July 06,2017 in DUI

Arlington Heights DUI defense lawyerBlood alcohol concentration, or BAC, is a measurement of the amount of alcohol in your bloodstream. Under the “rule of thumb,” it takes your body one hour to metabolize one drink, but there are several factors that can alter this. In fact, you might be driving much sooner than you should without knowing it. Learn more about how the body metabolizes alcohol and its influence your BAC levels, as well as more on what it could mean if you are pulled over by an officer, with help from the following information.

Factors That Can Influence Your BAC

Every person metabolizes alcohol differently, and there are numerous factors that come into play. For instance, a person with cirrhosis of the liver will typically metabolize alcohol slower than someone with a healthy liver. Other factors that can influence your body’s alcohol metabolism include:

  • Gender (women tend to metabolize alcohol slower than men);
  • Contents of your stomach (food slows the absorption of alcohol, resulting in a slower rise in your BAC level);
  • Genetics;
  • The number of drinks you consume;
  • The speed at which you consume alcohol (drinking several drinks in an hour is different than drinking several drinks over several hours);
  • Age (younger people can experience a faster spike in their BAC than older people); and
  • Weight and body size.

All these factors should be accounted for whenever you consume alcohol. In addition, it is crucial that you consider how your BAC could be impacted over the long-term. For example, if you consume several drinks in a short time-period, your BAC could still be elevated when you first wake up. As such, it may be best to avoid driving after a night of heavy drinking.

Avoiding a DUI Charge

There are many ways that you can avoid a DUI charge, even on a night of heavy drinking. For example, you could arrange a designated driver, call rideshare or taxi, or you could take public transit instead of driving. Alternatively, if you have only consumed a small amount of alcohol, you may be able to sober up before driving home; the only way to do this is to wait it out. Just remember that, because your body metabolizes alcohol at its own rate, the amount of time you must wait to drive may be different than someone else’s. Pay attention to your body and, if ever in doubt, arrange a ride or stay with a friend instead.

Contact Our Arlington Heights DUI Defense Lawyer

If you or someone you love is facing charges for driving while under the influence, contact Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law, for assistance. Dedicated and experienced, our Arlington Heights criminal defense attorney will strive for the most favorable outcome in your case. Call 847-253-3400 and schedule your personalized consultation with us today.


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