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How Your Body Metabolizes Alcohol

When you consume an alcoholic beverage, you may be expecting certain effects such as relaxation and reduced inhibitions. But have you ever wondered how your body processes the alcohol for you to have these reactions? The truth is that your body metabolizes alcohol in much the same way that it metabolizes food; however, there are some important things to consider about alcohol and your body.

If you or someone you know has been charged with an alcohol related offense, it is important that you get the best legal representation available. Contact Rhode Island DUI attorney Matthew Marin at 401-287-4384 to speak with a professional about your legal options.

The Process

After you intake an alcoholic beverage, it travels down your esophagus and into your small intestine. At this point, your body absorbs alcohol into its bloodstream through the walls of your intestine. Once in your bloodstream, it moves throughout your body, including to the brain, producing the effects associated with drinking.

Once it is in your bloodstream, your body begins to metabolize the alcohol. Metabolism is the process by which your body transforms ingested material into compounds, thereby eliminating it from your body. For alcohol, your body undergoes a process called oxidation, during which your liver detoxifies alcohol and removes it from your bloodstream in order to prevent long-term damage.


Your liver can only metabolize a certain amount of alcohol per hour, regardless of how much you ingest. If you drink more than your body can process per hour, the result is intoxication. While the amount of alcohol a liver can process varies from person to person, a standard rule is one alcoholic beverage per hour; however, for smaller people and women, this may be a generous estimate.

Contact Us

For legal advice on alcohol consumption or alcohol related crimes, contact the Rhode Island DUI lawyer Matthew Marin today. Call 401-287-4384 to schedule a free initial consultation.