Have you ever had a drink with some buddies and suddenly after just one pint you feel a bit… drink? You might just stare down at your drink, weirded out by it because you have not even got to your second beer yet.
“How is this even possible?” you ask yourself. Can you even get drunk from just one beer?
Well… Here we come, flying in with the facts. Time to learn if one beer can actually get you drunk!
What Is The Average Alcohol % In Beer?
There are a lot of types of beer that you can drink, although a vast majority of them have an ABV (Alcohol By Volume) rate of 4 to 10%.
Of course, there will be the occasional case in which a brewer is trying to make something especially boozy.
If you think about the standard size of a beer, which is typically at around 12 ounces then the average percentage is around 5% alcohol. However, beer could be above or below this.
Beers with high alcohol are not included in this, as you can definitely get drunk off of a high alcohol beer easily. Some of these can be up to 20%, sometimes higher.
In some parts of the world, you might even find beers between 50 and 65%! Although that is rare.
If you do feel tipsy from a single beer, you might want to check out the label to make sure that you aren’t hardcore chugging down a very high ABV beer.
What Influences How Drunk You Get?
If you find yourself feeling tipsy off of just one drink you will have questions. While we tend to consider the alcohol percentage itself, there is more to consider than just the percentage of alcohol in the drink.
Being drunk is unique to you, and not everyone acts the same when drunk, nor do they take the same amount to get drunk. It differs from person to person.
Here are some things that will influence how drunk you get and how much it will take for you.
How Old You Are
Age is actually a defining factor, not that we tend to consider it. We can drink more at 21 than we can in our 50s and 60s, and there is a reason for it.
You see, as you get older, your alcohol tolerance will decrease, this is due to our body mass decreasing as well. So, you actually have a better tolerance while you are younger.
Weight & Height
Your weight and height play into this too.
The more you way the more you will have to consume alcohol. If you were to weigh 100 lbs, you will find yourself feeling the effects of a few drinks much faster than someone who is double that.
Even a couple of pounds can make a difference.
Also, note that if you are taller your circulatory system is expanded, and so it will take a great deal longer for alcohol to get through your bloodstream than it does for someone who is lacking a bit more in height.
Your biological gender also plays a part here. You see, women will actually get drunk faster. This is not because of weakness, or anything else you might think of.
Women actually carry more fat on their body. Usually 6 to 11% more than men. This is thanks to the hormone estrogen which actually reduces a woman’s ability to burn energy once she has eaten.
It is likely to prime their body for bearing children. Female bodies were made for survival and being able to carry a child in hardy conditions, so their bodies store more fat than men’s.
Which also means that they usually cannot drink as much as men.
Science is weird right?
Health & Other Influences
There are more than physical traits at play though. People who have poor enzyme production will also have more difficulty processing alcohol as well.
Women who are on birth control, people who are getting over an illness (even the common cold), or even if you have insomnia or a terrible sleep schedule, you can be affected by alcohol more.
And, let’s not forget food as well, if you have a hardy meal prior to drinking, it will take more to get you drunk, if you do not, or you drink on an empty stomach, that beer will hit you like a tonne of bricks.
There is a reason that you should eat something before you hit the booze.
We call it ‘lining your stomach’, not only will the alcohol hit you faster if you haven’t eaten beforehand, but it is probably likely to make you sick as well.
And, without any food there to help you out, when you are sick, it will probably bring up some stomach acid, and boy, does that hurt coming up!
Tipsy After Only One? Well, It’s Cheaper!
It is not necessarily normal to feel drunk after just one drink, however, if many of the above factors apply to you, then perhaps they are all piling up to cause this.
If you are a young woman, who is short and weighs only 100 lbs, is on birth control and has not eaten all day, then you will probably be hit a lot harder by the booze than your tall.
Male friend who weighs 200lbs, and had a burger before you hit the bars.
To wrap this up, yes, technically you could get drunk off of a single beer, if all of the above factors applied to you, however, it is very unlikely if it is a standard low % beer.
Most common beers do not contain enough alcohol to make you drink via just one.
However, some of the high % beers may do, and if you have not eaten beforehand it is even more likely.
Sure, one beer might be on the stronger side and have the potential to make you tipsy, but if you are feeling flat-out drunk there is probably more at play than just the beer.