Alcohol free beers can be confusing. The are branded like beers and taste like beers but have no alcohol? We know you can’t drink beers and drive but what about alcohol free ones, what is the exact answer? Well, i have it for you.
It would take around 200 cans or bottles of Budweiser Zero drank over 1-2hrs for the average adult to start to feel any effects of the alcohol it contains. That is about 18.5 gallons or 70 litres of Budweiser Zero. It is not possible to drink that volume therefore you can not get drunk from drinking Budweiser Zero
I will go though all the numbers so you can be sae and sure that you will be able to drink Budweiser Zero and drive no matter how many you’ve had.
For a full range of questions and answers on Budweiser Zero, ready my article here
Can Budweiser Zero get you drunk? How many would it take?
This is the key question isn’t it. Can you drink twice as much or 10 times as much?
When you get a bottle of Budweiser Zero, it looks and tastes like a Budweiser so it is only fair to make sure you won’t get unwanted alcohol effects.
The initial thing to do is to find out the legal definition of being drunk, then work out how many standard beers it would take to achieve that. Then we can use that to see what that would be in <0.05% ABV beers like Budweiser Zero.
What is the definition of intoxicated?
In the USA, to be legally intoxicated under the law, means having a “blood alcohol concentration” (BAC) of 0.08%.
Not all bodies and people are born equal, lots of factors go into how you will process alcohol in your body. Sex, age, weight, overall health and your past drinking experience or tolerance to alcohol all play their part.
These factors can make it very hard to predict how much alcohol it takes to get a specific person drunk but we can generalise.
As well as person characteristics there is the amount, strength and time the alcohol was drank over.
I will use the lowest common denominator to factor in a margin of safety for most people.
What are the effects of alcohol as BAC rises?
You don’t have to be a genius to know as you drink more alcohol, your blood alcohol rises and it has a greater effect on you.
Lots of informational websites include these types of scale for BAC rises…
- 0.02% – Probably the lowest measurable BAC where you can track any brain issues. You may feel more relaxed and potentially make poorer decisions.
- 0.05%: When you hit this BAC, your behaviour will may become over exaggerated. Speak louder and gesturing more are common. You may also begin to lose control of small muscles like the ones that control your eyes leading to blurry vision.
- 0.08%: This is the current legal driving limit in the U.S and many areas around the world. It is also the legal definition of intoxicated in the US. You will likely lose some coordination, so your reaction times, speech, balance, and even hearing will deteriorate.
- 0.10%: As we reach this BAC, reaction times and control will be reduced further. Your speech will be slurred, you think slower, and your coordination becomes poor.
The numbers keep rising until coma and death occur.
How many standard beers to get you drunk?
This is where we start to generalise somewhat but we can keep on the side of caution.
If we first think of a “Standard beer” in the USA. It is a 12fl oz (about 350ml), 5% ABV beer.
If you drink 2 standard beers over 1 hour, you will probably get your BAC into the 0.4-0.6% region, depending on all those other factors i mentioned.
The average adult can likely drink more than this but a small woman might be less and i will certainly be more as a 2xx lb adult male!
How many Budweiser Zero to get you drunk?
Let’s convert 2 standard beers (5% ABV) into Budweiser Zero (max 0.05% ABV) and work out a basic minimum number you’d need to drink over an 1-2 hours to raise your BAC enough to start to feel drunk. Although it may really take x2 this amount.
|12 Fl 0z Bottle of beer by ABV %||x2 US/Canadian Standard Drinks equivalent||Drinks needed for same alcohol volume|
|5% Regular Beer||2||2|
|1.2% Low alcohol||0.5||8|
|0.5% Dealcoholised/Non alcoholic||0.2||20|
|0.05% Alcohol free||0.02||200|
So you would need to drink x200 12fl oz measures of Budweiser Zero for the alcohol in them to have the same effect on you as 2 standard beers?
Some other units of measurement are…
- 200 12fl oz cans or bottles
- 125 UK Pints
- 2400 fluid ounces
- 75 Quarts
- 18.75 gallons
This is the amount of Budweiser Zero you need to drink per hour to get anywhere near being legally drunk.
I really don’ think that is even possible and you would likely die trying. I would not recommend having a go.
Consequently, you can drink any amount of Budweiser Zero you can and never get drunk.
The flip side of this is to look more closely at the rate you would have to drink these at. 200 12fl oz bottles over 2 hours is about 5 bottles every 3mins. I need to go pee just thinking about that.
If you want to try that impossible task you will probably want to know what Budweiser Zero tastes like. Luckily I’ve an ultimate review of Budweiser Zero vs Budweiser here you you to read
Why do you have to keep drinking at that rate for BAC to stay raised?
When you drink alcohol, you absorb the alcohol from your gut and it makes its way into your blood. If you increase the amount of alcohol you drink, more of it makes its way into your bloodstream.
Your liver is working away to lower the blood alcohol concentration by breaking down the alcohol. You have to drink more than the liver can break down over a given time frame for your BAC to rise.
So not only do you have to drink a certain amount of alcohol to feel the effects of it, you also have to keep drinking alcohol at or above the rate at which you metabolise it.
This means that after you have somehow managed to drink 200 Budweiser Zero, you would have to keep drinking that many every 1-2 hours as your body is breaking down the alcohol as you drink.
My dedicated article to how many drinks does it take for both a non alcoholic and alcohol free beer to get you drunk can be read here