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How Long It Really Takes Booze To Clear Your System

Sometimes we all do things that aren’t necessarily healthy. Drinking is one of those things…it’s tasty, fun, and usually happens with friends and family set on having good times with you. We all also know that too much of a good thing can lead to something bad…like a hangover or irresponsible legal trouble. To cut down the risk of the bad things happening, it’s helpful to know how your body works so you can plan out the rest of your evening.

  • To get through your system, your stomach enzymes first have to start breaking the alcohol down.
  • From there, it goes into your small intestine, where it gets absorbed into your body, eventually scurrying its way to your liver…where the vast majority of the metabolizing happens.
  • It’s there that the conversion to “acetaldehyde” begins, and that’s where fun things like headaches, nausea, and heart palpitations are born.

To peak in your system, one drink – defined as a can of beer, five ounces of wine, or one shot of 80-proof liquor – takes about an hour. It takes longer for the booze to completely clear your system, about one full day for one serving. Detection, however, is a different matter…

  • Blood – up to 12 hours
  • Breath – 12-24 hours
  • Pee – 12-72 hours
  • Spit – 12-48 hours
  • Hair – up to 90 days

Source: Men’s Health

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