Does the Yeast Trick Prevent DUI?

Could consuming yeast just before you begin drinking mitigate the effects of alcohol and prevent destructive behaviors like DUI? Jim Koch, the cofounder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company definitely seems to believe so.

In an interview with Esquire Magazine recently, Cock credited yeast for his ability to drink copious amounts of alcohol, without feeling the intoxicating effects. According to him, this is a trick that he has used for many years now to mitigate the effects of alcohol. He consumes standard yeast just before he begins drinking. He mixes 1 teaspoon of yeast powder in yogurt for every beer that he drinks. He consumes the yeast just before he starts drinking, and claims that it mitigates the effects of the alcohol.

According to him, the yeast in the stomach breaks down the alcohol into molecules of hydrogen, carbon and oxygen. That means that the alcohol gets broken down into these molecules even before it hits the bloodstream. Yeast contains an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase. Alcohol dehydrogenase is able to immediately break down the alcohol into molecules in your stomach. This process of breaking down the alcohol into molecules of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen typically occurs when the alcohol passes through your stomach and into your liver. The less alcohol in your bloodstream, the lower the impairment that you are likely to suffer.

Koch insists that this yeast remedy for drunkenness has worked very well for him over the years. He however, cautions that yeast does not eliminate the effect of alcohol, but merely mitigates it. Experts are critical of Koch’s theory, and say that even if there are any benefits to easting yeast before consuming beer, the benefits are likely very short-lived.