Because of their larger fat-to-water ratio, women tend to feel the affects of alcohol more quickly than males. Even when comparing persons of the same height and weight, a woman’s BAC rises at a higher rate than a man’s.
Women Tend to Reach Higher Bac Levels More Quickly than Men Because
When compared to men, why do women experience the effects of alcohol sooner? Alcohol intoxication strikes women more quickly than men because of their lower bodily water content and the hormonal shifts that occur around menstruation.
A woman’s metabolism of alcohol slows down in the week leading up to her menstruation, amplifying its impact on her body. Alcohol metabolization is aided in men by enzymatic differences compared to women.
The suggestions for what constitutes “moderate drinking” are based on this scientific evidence. The CDC recommends that women limit themselves to no more than one drink per day and males to no more than two. What an enormous contrast!
We’ll go into a bit more detail on why women become intoxicated faster, whether you’re sober and curious or just looking for information on something you always assumed to be true.
You could wind up thinking that it would be a good idea to join the ranks of the sober female celebs after all.
Alcohol is Metabolised Differently in Women for Three Reasons:
It’s not simple to discuss the ways in which men and women differ in their alcohol metabolism. We do know, however, that alcohol is processed differently in the female body compared to the male.
How fast does a woman’s body process alcohol? Alcohol is metabolised at a rate of roughly 0.015g/100mL per hour in both men and women. It’s not the “rate” of metabolism that separates males from women, but rather the efficiency with which it works.
The effects of alcohol on the body are modifiable by factors such as the amount of food consumed that day, the rate at which it was consumed, and even the presence of any other medications you may be on. It’s also crucial to think about individual biological variances when drinking.
No matter how much alcohol a woman drinks, she will feel its effects more quickly due to her body’s water content, enzyme levels, and even hormonal processes.
1: Reduced Body Water Content
When it comes to consuming alcoholic beverages, body weight is a factor. Larger individuals or those with a higher percentage of body fat absorb alcohol at a slower rate. A man’s body contains more tissue areas and blood vessels that can distribute alcohol than a woman’s.
Body water content is another area where men and women differ significantly. The percentage of water in a man’s body weight ranges from 55 to 65% on average. A woman, on the other hand, typically comprises 45-55% water by weight.
Increased hydration dilutes the effects of alcohol use. Because of this, regardless of how much alcohol either sex consumes on a given night, a man’s BAC will remain lower than a woman’s.
2: Reducing Activity of Enzymes
Because of a hormonal imbalance, women are less able to digest alcohol than men. Gastric alcohol dehydrogenase, an enzyme that aids in alcohol metabolism, is more abundant in men.
The enzyme has a direct influence on blood alcohol concentration by degrading more alcohol in the stomach.
3: Hormone Swings Becoming More Frequent
Women’s hormonal variances, such as the phase of the menstrual cycle they happen to be in when drinking, also play a role. Studies have shown that the week before a woman’s menstruation begins is the most intoxicating time for her to drink.
During the week leading up to a woman’s period, the initial effects of intoxication, such as decreased reaction times, slurred speech, and even loss of inhibitions, seem to linger for longer.
This means that it may take women longer to feel the effects of alcohol than men. Traditional contraceptive pill users and women who drank ethanol had similar reactions, the study found. However, as contraceptives have evolved since the original 1984 study, more investigation is required.
Substantial Alcohol Use Among Women
For both men and women, a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher constitutes binge drinking. It’s common for women to consume that much alcohol in just two hours. Women who consume 8 or more alcoholic beverages per week are considered heavy drinkers. The weekly drinking limit for men is 15.
Men continue to consume more alcohol overall and during binge episodes. Nonetheless, despite the success of campaigns like “dry January,” the number of women who binge drink or drink excessively is on the rise.
In instance, alcohol consumption surged during the COVID-19 pandemic, with one study finding that heavy drinking among women increased by 41%.
Alcohol was used more frequently by women than by males to deal with the stress of the epidemic, according to another study. The findings also hinted at further, potential long-term consequences associated with this increased drinking among women.
The CDC reports that one in seven women binge drinks on a regular basis. In what ways does alcohol impair one’s bodily functions? High blood pressure, heart difficulties, and an increased risk of some malignancies and chronic illnesses are all long-term repercussions of alcohol use.
Such long-term impacts on the body can be especially harmful for women.
Alcohol Use and Women’s Health
Short-term effects of alcohol consumption include impaired decision making, disturbed sleep, and increased vulnerability to negative outcomes like blackouts and accidents. Reducing alcohol consumption has many positive effects on men’s and women’s health, the most obvious of which is an increase in life expectancy.
Excessive drinking over a long period of time has been associated with:
- Gaining weight
- Cancer Risk Is Likely to Rise
- Disorders of the heart
- Indicators of Diabetes Complications
- Damage to the liver (e.g., fatty liver disease, hepatitis)
- Decreased resistance to illness
- Misuse of Alcohol
When it comes to alcohol’s long-term consequences on health, women are more vulnerable. Drinking to excess increases a woman’s chances for:
- Alcohol abuse is a leading cause of liver cirrhosis and other liver diseases. This increased vulnerability is traced back to specific enzymes, and is especially severe for females.
- Women who drink alcohol have a greater chance of developing high blood pressure, stroke, and other cardiovascular disorders than males do.
- Drinking to excess increases your risk of developing breast cancer. The drinking habits of teenagers and young adults make this very clear.
- Research suggest that women are more likely than males to become alcoholics and experience more severe withdrawal symptoms if they try to cut back on their drinking. When trying to quit drinking, women face similar challenges to men.
Want Taste Without the Buzz?
Aesthetically, it doesn’t make sense, but the data doesn’t lie. Women are more likely to have severe, rapid intoxication and long-lasting consequences than men.
Yet, things need not be that way. Whether you’re trying to cut back on alcohol or go dry entirely, you don’t have to give up good taste to do it.
wine alternatives that don’t contain alcohol but nevertheless taste great and give you the same enjoyment without the risk of overindulgence.
We recommend either our sparkling rosé or sparkling white wine if you’re looking for a delicious drink that won’t leave you feeling hungover the next day.