What factors impact a person’s BAC level after drinking?

There are many factors that can impact how quickly a person’s BAC level rises, such as weight, after consuming an alcoholic beverage.

In Tennessee, and in all other states in the country, it is illegal to operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 or higher, states the Governors Highway Safety Association. However, people may have a hard time determining if their BAC level has exceeded this legal limit and put themselves at risk of a DUI because there are many factors that impact how quickly this level rises following the consumption of an alcoholic beverage.

Important factors

One of the factors that impacts how quickly a person's BAC level rises after drinking alcohol is how many drinks per hour are consumed. The more drinks that are consumed in an hour, the higher the person's BAC level will be. Some of the other factors that impact BAC level include the following:

  • Weight--The more a person weighs, the more water is present in his or her body. Since alcohol is diluted by water, the more a person weighs, the lower his or her BAC level will be after consuming the same amount of alcohol.
  • Gender--Generally speaking, women's bodies contain more fat than men's bodies. Since alcohol has a harder time going into fat cells than compared with other cells, women are more likely to keep higher levels of alcohol in their bloodstream.
  • Age--After consuming one alcoholic drink, an older person will have a higher BAC level than a younger one.

How much food is in the stomach also affects how quickly a person's BAC level rises. Since food absorbs alcohol, a person who has eaten something before consuming alcohol will have a lower BAC level than someone who does not have any food in his or her stomach.

The consequences of a DUI

In Tennessee, the consequences of a DUI conviction are significant. For instance, according to the Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security, first-time DUI offenders may have to spend up to 11 months in jail and have their license revoked for up to a year. First-time offenders may also have to install an Ignition Interlock Device in their vehicle and attend drug and alcohol treatment.

Since the consequences of being convicted of a DUI for even the first time are severe, those facing a conviction may be concerned about their future. Those who are in a similar situation should reach out to an attorney in their area who can help them assert their legal rights.