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How Much Whiskey Does it Take to Get Drunk?

Will Beck
Last Updated: February 28th, 2023

How much whiskey does it take to get drunk? It’s a question that is often debated, and there are many different factors to consider. Body weight, alcohol tolerance, and the type of whiskey all play a role in how quickly one can become intoxicated.

In general, it takes about 1.5 ounces of 80-proof whiskey to cause intoxication in an average-sized person. However, heavier drinkers may require more alcohol to feel the effects, and lighter drinkers may become intoxicated with less.

The type of whiskey also makes a difference. A lower-proof whiskey will contain more water and will therefore be less intoxicating.

Age and Body Weight

Age and body weight play a major role in how much whiskey someone can drink before feeling intoxicated. In general, it takes about 1.5 ounces of 80-proof whiskey to cause intoxication in an average-sized person.

For example, someone who weighs more than 200 pounds will likely feel less intoxicated after drinking the same amount of whiskey as someone who weighs 100 pounds.

Age is also a significant factor. A 55-year-old will generally be less affected by whiskey than a 25-year-old, even if they weigh the same amount. So how does this all work? Basically, it boils down to body composition and metabolism.

The more body fat someone has, the more water their body contains. And since alcohol is soluble in water, it takes longer for the body to absorb and process it. As we age, our bodies become less efficient at processing alcohol, so it takes longer to clear it from our system.

All of this means that age and weight can play a major role in how much whiskey someone can drink before feeling intoxicated.

Alcohol Tolerance

If you frequently drink alcohol, you may notice that it takes longer for you to feel the effects of intoxication. This is because your body becomes more tolerant of alcohol over time.

When you first start drinking, your body is not used to processing the alcohol, so it is quickly absorbed into your bloodstream. As a result, you will feel drunk more quickly.

However, if you drink regularly, your body will learn to metabolize the alcohol more efficiently. As a result, it will take longer for you to reach a state of intoxication.

While this may seem like a good thing, it can actually be quite dangerous. If you are used to feeling drunk after only a few drinks, you may be tempted to keep drinking until you reach that same level of intoxication.

However, since your tolerance has increased, it will take much more alcohol to achieve that same level of drunkenness.

A high tolerance can lead to serious health problems or even death. Therefore, it is important to be aware of your tolerance level and drink responsibly.


Type of Whiskey

A whiskey with a higher alcohol content will likely have someone feeling intoxicated faster than a glass of wine or beer.

Whiskeys with 60 percent ABV will get a person drunker than those with lower alcohol content because they have a higher cask strength, which means more alcohol by volume.

Cask strength is the measure of how much alcohol is present in the final product. The higher the cask strength, the more alcohol by volume, and the faster you’ll get drunk.

How Much Whiskey Does it Take to Get Drunk -Other Considerations

Many other factors can influence how quickly you get drunk, including your meal, posture, type of drink, quantity consumed, sex, and more.

For example, standing up while drinking can cause the alcohol to be absorbed more quickly into your bloodstream. Consuming a high-fat meal before drinking can also slow down absorption.

Biological women generally get drunk faster than men because they have less water in their bodies or are menstruating.

According to The Whisky Guide, studies have shown that alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream more quickly during ovulation when levels of the hormone estrogen are highest.

This means that if you’re menstruating, you may want to take it easy on the whiskey – or at least be aware that you might get drunk a little faster than usual.

Ultimately, it is impossible to say how much whiskey one needs to drink to become intoxicated without knowing more about the individual in question.

However, as a general rule, it is safe to say that drinking too much whiskey is never a good idea.

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About The Author

Will Beck

Will is a true digital nomad, taking his work on the road at every opportunity. His first love is coffee, with whiskey a close 2nd. He loves nothing more than enjoying a perfectly brewed coffee with spectacular scenery whilst he coordinates behind the scenes of the Drink Stack blog!

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