Thursday, September 26, 2013

Beer-Producing Gut Gets Man Drunk on Bread

I read years ago that we all produce some alcohol each day in our digestive systems. But not usually enough to make us drunk.

By Breanna Draxler | September 19, 2013

Here’s a medical mystery for you. A man checks himself into an emergency room in Texas because he feels dizzy. Dizzy? Try drunk. His blood alcohol concentration is soaring at 0.37 percent. But here’s the sticking point: the man hasn’t had a single drink that day.

How the heck?


Turns out the man had a thriving colony of brewer’s yeast in his gut. As reported by NPR,

“The patient had an infection with Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Cordell says. So when he ate or drank a bunch of starch — a bagel, pasta or even a soda — the yeast fermented the sugars into ethanol, and he would get drunk. Essentially, he was brewing beer in his own gut.”

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