Factors Impacting Alcohol Levels
Many factors affect how alcohol is absorbed, as any good Orange County DUI lawyer can tell you. If alcohol absorption is delayed or quickened, it can affect the BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) reading significantly. It takes an expert to weigh all of the issues and understand their impacts.
Consider the pyloric valve, for instance. The pyloric valve is the body’s spigot between the stomach and small intestine. Different types of liquor affect it differently. High proof drinks can cause the valve to seize and delay the speed of emptying into the stomach by hours. But lower-alcohol content drinks, such as mixed drinks, can have the opposite impact, causing spasms of the valve and leading to faster absorption. What about sugary drinks? These delay the absorption rate of alcohol in a mechanism similar to food.
It is no surprise that the amount of alcohol consumed, as well as the type, plays a role. Low volumes of alcohol encourage stomach emptying, while greater alcohol consumption slows the emptying process, leading to a delay, and a following increase in peak blood alcohol concentration.
Drinking large quantities quickly may have the same impact as high-proof alcohol when it results in a seizure of the pyloric valve, delaying absorption of alcohol. On the other hand, social drinking or consuming alcohol over a longer time period gives the liver the chance to clear out, lowering blood alcohol content over time, and in effect speeding alcohol absorption.
It is possible to mix drinking habits as well, for instance drinking socially and slowly over many hours, then consuming some drinks in quick succession. This clearly steepens the blood alcohol curve. Cigarettes can also impact alcohol absorption. Smoking right before a meal can slow down the emptying of the stomach and also alcohol absorption. There are many more factors, and an experienced Orange County DUI lawyer will be aware of all of them and how they can affect your case.
Like any metabolic activity, alcohol absorption fluctuates with the type and speed of consumption, with food, cigarettes, and dozens of other factors. Orange County DUI lawyers Coffey & Coffey keep current on the latest findings of forensic research on the topic. Call them for expert local legal representation in a DUI case at (800) 706-7888.