Meet the man who gets drunk on chips

Published Mar 6, 2015, 6:15 pm IST
Updated Mar 29, 2019, 4:30 pm IST
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London: A British man suffering from auto-brewery syndrome can get drunk on chips, it has been reported. Chowing down on a box of carbs sends Nick Hess into a drunken, vulgar state, the BBC reported.
Hess' wife thought he was an alcoholic and one night scoured their house trying to find what she thought was hidden bottles of alcohol. But after a visit to a doctor, it turned out Hess was suffering from a rare condition where the stomach has an overgrowth of yeast which turns carbohydrates into excess alcohol in the blood. He would also wake up with a hangover, having to vomit most mornings and suffering from stomach pains and headaches normally associated with a big night out.
He was taken to hospital and given carbohydrates but no alcohol. At one point during the afternoon, his blood alcohol levels rose to 120 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood – the equivalent of drinking seven shots of whisky.
It has been hard to cure, with Hess having take anti-fungal drugs and use a diet low in carbohydrates and sugar. "I still have one or two episodes a month," he said."But it's nowhere near as bad as it was. I have my wife to thank for that. She carried on searching for an answer when I was ready to give up. I'm so grateful to her."
Hess said he had no idea how bad it was and simply thought everyone was giving him a hard time.


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