Could You Get Drunk By Drinking The Blood Of A Drunk Person?

There's a common trope in vampire stories where a vampire gets drunk by drinking the blood of someone who is wasted. But could a real human being get drunk in the same way?

That's the latest question that xkcd's Randall Munroe tackles in his What If? series. The short answer is no—in part because the human body wouldn't be able to stomach all that blood. But even if you were a vampire and could down all five liters of blood from the body of a human being with a potentially lethal BAC of 0.40, you wouldn't even get buzzed:

You wouldn't throw up because because of the alcohol; you'd just throw up because you're drinking blood. If you somehow avoided vomiting, you would have ingested a total of 2 grams of ethanol, which is the amount you'd get from one shot glass full of beer.

Drinking that much blood would, in turn, raise your own blood alcohol level to 0.005. In other words, only 1/60th of the alcohol in their blood would make it into yours.

So it's probably best to stick to non-bloody booze. Head over to What If? for more on the effects of drinking human blood accompanied by Munroe's illustrations. If you don't want to see drawings of a person vomiting blood, don't worry; Munroe doesn't want to draw them, either.

Top image by Randall Munroe.

Could you get drunk from drinking a drunk person's blood? [What If? via Laughing Squid]