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How Many Beers Does It Take To Get Drunk? Solved (2022)

Last Updated on September 20, 2022 by Lydia Martin

There can be different reasons for alcohol consumption- relaxation, celebration, fun, and even stress release.  

Most experienced drinkers know how many beers it would take to get drunk. This research can be useful to first-timers since many factors affect someone’s alcohol capacity. 

So, how many beers does it take to get drunk? Read on.  

Number of Beers To Get You Drunk 

Beer on desk

In general, an average male may take four to five beers, while an average healthy female may take two to four beers in an hour to get drunk. However, consuming alcohol and getting drunk varies with different factors. 

For instance, higher beer alcohol content can make you drunk faster. It would help if you also considered gender because women generally get drunk faster than men. 

Other factors such as weight, height, medication, age, and alcohol tolerance also matter.  

Factors To Consider

Factors To Consider

ABV 

Beers [1] may contain different alcohol content, and more alcohol content can make you drunk easily.

Craft beers contain higher ABV than lighter commercial beers, so don’t be surprised if you don’t get drunk with non-alcoholic beers, light beer, or Bud Light easily. 

Also, your drink’s size matters because not all beers are served in the same amount; a higher volume obviously contains higher alcohol content.

Here’s a table of beer categories and how much alcohol they contain: 

Beer Category Average ABV
Lager 4.5% – 5%
Hybrid 4.5% – 5%
IPA Ale 6 – 8%
Low Alcohol Beer 0.96
English Pale Ale 4.71

Age

Age

As people age, their tolerance for alcohol decreases. The elderly get drunk easily due to loss of muscular mass.

Young people have a fast metabolism and enough muscle mass, so they have a higher tolerance. 

When you get older, it is a common scenario that your metabolism declines [2]. After drinking beer, older people may have higher blood alcohol concentration because they have slower rates of elimination of alcohol. 

Read: Draft Beer & Craft Beer Compared

Weight & Height

Lighter people get drunk more easily than heavier people because the body fat of a heavy person reduces alcohol resistance.

It may take three to four beers for an average female to get drunk, but it may take one drink for a female who weighs 100 pounds to feel tipsy or get drunk.

Also, height is a factor to consider because a taller person should drink more to get drunk than shorter people.

An average man can be drunk after two or three drinks, while taller people hardly feel the sign of drunkenness after three beers because of a longer circulatory system. 

Gender

Gender

Based on the University of Notre Dame Division of Student Affairs, gender affects the absorption rate of alcohol [3].

An average-sized man has a higher percentage of water and weighs heavier than a woman because they have less fat and more muscle mass. 

An average woman can drink beer, but they can get drunk after two to four beers because they have less alcohol dehydrogenase. It will help break down alcohol leading to increased blood alcohol content. 

Alcohol Tolerance

Have you noticed that some people get drunk with two bottles of beer while some do not get drunk easily? It is because not all people have a similar tolerance for alcohol. 

However, a sad reality is that those who have a high tolerance for alcohol are prone to problematic drinking, binge drinking, chronic drinking, and alcohol intoxication.

Alcohol resistance can lead to alcohol dependence, which may lead to alcohol poisoning and severe alcohol use disorder. 

Empty Stomach

Empty Stomach

An empty stomach can make you legally drunk easily, so make sure to eat something before you drink beer. Drinking water or eating while drinking alcohol can help slow down the rate of getting drunk.

Alcohol enters your bloodstream through your stomach. The blood alcohol content will slowly increase if you eat something before you drink alcohol.  

Medication

Combining alcohol and medicines can be bad for your health. It may increase the risk of complications like liver damage, heart problems, internal bleeding, depression, and impaired breathing. 

Doctors do not encourage drinking alcohol while on medication, but people under medication should get drunk easily.

Medicines are drugs, so when combined with alcohol, they may create bad effects on a person’s body, such as impaired judgment and weak motor skills. 

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Rate of Consumption

Rate of Consumption

Unlike pure alcohol, beer does not contain high ABV, so it is easier and faster to consume. But did you know that once you consume alcohol faster, your blood alcohol levels quickly rise? 

There’s a rule of thumb that a beer an hour will not get you drunk, but it only works for a couple of hours. Expect that if you consume two bottles per hour, your BAC will spike up. 

Mood & Lack of Sleep

Based on studies, mood and lack of sleep may affect intoxication, especially if you take birth control pills. Slight mood changes occur at BAC .02-0.05, and at about 0.07, your mood begins to deteriorate. 

If you feel depressed or have anxiety, your mood and lack of sleep may trigger you to drink more beer and get drunk easily. Moreso, your emotion can affect the process of alcohol in your stomach. 

Read: Types of IPA Beers

How To Tell When You’re Already Drunk From Beer

Beers and chicken on table

You will know if you are drunk from beer when your motor skills do not function 100%.

At 0.08% BAC, your brain, muscle, and nervous system will be affected. You are legally drunk if your BAC is over 0.08% in Canada and the US. 

At this point, you may feel good, and your mood is upbeat. Your muscle coordination diminishes, your reflexes are slow, and you might sway a bit. 

Read: How Much is a Keg of Beer?

Tips On How Not To Get Drunk Fast 

  • Never drink beer with an empty stomach because your bloodstream will absorb the alcohol faster and get you drunk fast. 
  • Space out your drinks because drinking quickly can make you drunk easily. 
  • Food and water can be your friend because it helps slow down the effect of alcohol on your system. 

How To Calculate The Number of Beers To Get Drunk

How To Calculate The Number of Beers To Get Drunk

You can use a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) calculator to help you calculate the number of beers to get you drunk and the average percentage of alcohol in your body. The BAC chart data will determine the alcohol present in your bloodstream. 

Read: Most Affordable Beer To Drink

BAC Chart for Men

BAC Chart for Men

Approximate BAC %
12 oz Beer

5% ABV

Weight in Pounds Remarks
100 120 140 160 180 200 220 240
0 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 Safe Driving LImit
1 .04 .03 .03 .02 .02 .02 .02 .02 Driving Skills Compromised
2 .08 .06 0.5 0.5 .04 .04 .03 .03
3 .11 .09 .08 .07 .06 .06 .05 .05 Potential 

Penalties

4 .15 .12 .11 .09 .08 .08 .07 .06
5 .19 .16 .13 .12 .11 .09 .09 .08 Legally Drunk /Intoxicated
6 .23 .19 .16 .14 .13 .11 .10 .09
7 .26 .22 .19 .16 .15 .13 .12 .11 Penalties
8 .30 .25 .21 .19 .17 .15 .14 .13
9 .34 .28 .24 .21 .19 .17 .15 .14
10 .38 .31 .27 .23 .21 .19 .17 .16 Fatal

*Based on College of Saint Benedict-Saint John’s University data. 

BAC Chart for Women

BAC Chart for Women

Approximate BAC %
12 oz Beer

5% ABV

Weight in Pounds Remarks
90 100 120 140 160 180 200 220 240
0 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 .00 Safe Driving LImit
1 .05 .05 .04 .03 .03 .03 .02 .02 .02 Driving Skills Compromised
2 .10 .09 .08 .07 .06 .05 .05 .04 .04
3 .15 .14 .11 .10 .09 .08 .07 .06 .06 Potential 

Penalties

4 .20 .16 .15 .13 .11 .10 .09 .08 .08
5 .25 .23 .19 .16 .14 .13 .11 .10 .09 Legally Drunk /Intoxicated
6 .30 .27 .23 .19 .17 .15 .14 .12 .11
7 .35 .32 .27 .23 .20 .18 .16 .14 .13 Penalties
8 .40 .36 .30 .26 .23 .20 .19 .17 .15
9 .45 .41 .34 .29 .26 .23 .20 .19 .17
10 .51 .45 .38 .32 .29 .25 .23 .21 .19 Fatal

*Based on College of Saint Benedict-Saint John’s University data. 

How Long Does Being Drunk Last?

It may take you about six hours before your drunkenness wears off. However, you must remember that even if you don’t feel drunk anymore, you may still be considered legally drunk.

If you are driving, you may blow over the legal limit if you exceed 0.08, so it would be best not to drive even after six hours. 

FAQs 

Can one beer get you drunk?

No, you will not get drunk with one beer. Beer may contain 4-5% ABV, which is not high enough to get you drunk or raise your blood alcohol level. However, if it contains a higher ABV, it can be possible. 

Is there a non-alcoholic beer?

Yes, there is a non-alcoholic beer. It contains 0.05% ABV, and there’s no chance to get intoxicated at that level. 

How many Bud Lights can get you drunk?

It will take a man between 5-8 Bud Lights to get drunk for over 2 hours. In addition, a woman can get drunk with 3-5 Bud Lights over the same period. 

How many Budweisers can get you drunk?

It will take 4 Budweisers in an hour to get a man drunk. Moreso, it may take 3 Budweisers for a woman to get drunk over the same period. 

How many Miller Lites can get you drunk?

It will take 4 Miller Lites to get a man drunk in an hour because it contains 4.2% ABV only. In the same period, a woman can get drunk after 2-3 Miller Lites. 

How many Coors can get you drunk?

In 2 hours, a man can get drunk in 7-8 Coors. However, it may take 4-5 Coors to get a 140-pound man drunk in an hour. 

Final Thoughts

Generally, an average-sized man will need four to five beers to get drunk, while an average-sized woman will need two to four beers. The alcohol absorption and body reaction to alcohol vary depending on the weight and height of a person. 

Getting drunk depends on factors like gender, consumption rate, and lifestyle. Men metabolize and absorb alcohol differently than women because they do not eliminate alcohol faster than women.   

References:

  1. https://www.britannica.com/topic/beer 
  2. https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/alcohol-and-age-a-risky-combination 
  3. https://mcwell.nd.edu/your-well-being/physical-well-being/alcohol/absorption-rate-factor

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