Women: You Can’t Outdrink the Men

Have you ever told a man that you can drink him under the table? Women should think twice before going drink-for-drink with their male counterparts. Science shows that men have the upper hand when it comes to processing alcohol.

It is widely accepted that if a smaller person consumes the same amount of alcohol as a larger person, then the larger person will be less affected. This is due to the fact that as ethanol is absorbed into the bloodstream, it is distributed throughout the body—the bigger the body, the more distribution that must occur—resulting in lower blood alcohol content (BAC). Men, on average, are taller and heavier than women. However, height and weight aren’t the only disadvantages women face.

Women could still find themselves at a drinking disadvantage due to 4 factors:

1) Body Fat: A person’s level of body fat is directly related to the absorption rate and ability to metabolize alcohol. On average, a man has more muscle when compared with a woman. A man’s testosterone level puts him at a biological advantage, since testosterone plays a role in decreasing body fat. Fat does not absorb alcohol, resulting in a higher concentration of alcohol in the blood stream. Assume Jack and Jill are the same height and weight, but that Jack has more muscle mass than Jill. They can drink the same drinks at the same rate, but Jill will have a higher BAC.

2) Water Concentration: Water aids in the dilution of alcohol, and a man’s body contains a greater percentage of water than a woman’s. The concentration of water in the average man is around 61 percent, which is considerably higher than the 52 percent of an average woman.

3) Capacity to Metabolize Alcohol: Even if a woman has less body fat than a man, she may still be hindered by something beyond her control. Compared to men, women have lower concentrations of dehydrogenase—an enzyme found in the stomach that aids in metabolizing alcohol. The result? Men are able to break down more ethanol in the stomach, so less is absorbed into the bloodstream.

4) Hormones: Variations in hormone levels can cause women to become intoxicated quicker than men. This is most evident prior to menstruation. Women who take estrogen-added medications, such as birth control, are often intoxicated longer because the medication slows the rate at which the body is able to eliminate alcohol.

If you have been charged with a DUI, call the Arizona Criminal Defense Attorneys at Oracle Law Group Office today. 480-704-0777