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How does alcohol interact with your body?

One common thing that people believe is that they can drink the same amount of alcohol as their friends or family members and still be fine. The reality is that alcohol affects everyone differently. What makes one person a little tipsy might be enough to make another person drunk.

Alcohol affects people differently based on a few different factors. Some of the factors that might influence how alcohol affects you include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Weight
  • Drinking history
  • Food
  • Speed of intake
  • Fizziness
  • Genetics
  • Body type

Although some of these might seem like they wouldn't affect you, the truth is that they can. For example, did you know that an overweight person is more likely to be affected than a person who is lean and muscular? The reason is that there is less fluid in the body of an overweight individual, which means that the alcohol becomes more concentrated in their blood at a faster rate.

Fizziness is another factor people often forget about. Drinks like champagne or those mixed with tonic affect people more quickly than others. Fizz results in faster absorption overall.

Age and gender also play a role in how alcohol affects you. Younger and older individuals tend to be affected more significantly. Females are also more likely to be affected by alcohol than males. Why? Women have a higher percentage of body fat as well as less fluid in their bodies, making alcohol more potent.

Weight also plays a role, though it varies based on your body's makeup. For example, a muscular person weighing 150 pounds will be less affected than an overweight person weighing 150 pounds. Larger people do have more fluids in the body, which can dilute alcohol better, particularly if they are tall and lean.

One additional factor that might influence how alcohol affects you is the mood you're in when you drink. Some people find that drinking changes their mood or makes it more intense. If you're in a bad mood, this could make your mood worse, or it could boost your mood and make you take unnecessary risks.

With so many factors that can affect how alcohol interacts with your body, it's important not to plan to drive after you drink. Alcohol affects everyone differently, and it may affect you differently in diverse situations. Prepare to get a ride home if you plan to drink, whether it's with a friend or a ride-share service.

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Suffolk County Defenders Association New York State Defenders Association | Founded 1967 New York State Bar Association Suffolk County Bar Association | NY 1908

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