Being charged with a DUI in Florida can be a stressful experience, but this situation can be even more difficult if you do not believe you were drunk. While any alcohol can lead to intoxication, it generally takes a substantial amount to increase your blood alcohol concentration to above the legal limit. If you believe that you did not consume enough alcohol to result in a high BAC, a rare intestinal condition may be to blame.
According to CNN, auto-brewery syndrome is a medical condition in which the gut is home to an abnormally large amount of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, more commonly known as brewer’s yeast. Since this yeast is the same one used in beer production, your gut fermentation can create ethanol, the type of alcohol that is also found in beer. As the ethanol levels rise, so does your BAC.
If you suffer from auto-brewery syndrome, it is possible for you to have a raised blood alcohol level without ingesting any alcohol. The yeast initiates the fermentation process when you eat carbohydrates, such as bread products and sugars. Since beer falls into this category, consuming a small amount of beer can cause your gut to ferment the food and cause your BAC to be much higher than it would normally be.
Many people do not find out that they have this condition until they are cited with a DUI when they do not believe they were drunk. One New York woman underwent a 12-hour observation after this happened and found that her BAC rose to four times the legal limit without any alcohol consumption. This information is intended for your education and should not be taken as legal advice.