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A breathalyzer confirmed that the man was indeed very intoxicated. He was nearly five times over the legal driving limit of Texas. However, the man insisted that he had not touched a drop of alcohol that day.
Doctors put him under 24-hour observation and noticed that whenever he ate something with starch, like bread, a bagel or pasta, his belly produced a yeast.
The yeast, which is called Saccharomyces cerevisiae, accumulated in his intestinal tract, which then brewed into beer, as the yeast fermented the sugars into ethanol, which is pure alcohol.
The Texas man gave a new meaning to the term “beer belly” after being diagnosed with a rare medical condition where he gets drunk without touching a drop of alcohol. The 61-year-old is suffering from a rare disease called Gut fermentation syndrome, also known as auto-brewery syndrome.
Before his diagnosis, his wife accused him of being a secret alcoholic as he was often drunk. He woke up drunk and sometimes suddenly appeared drunk at church and at work.
Doctors finally diagnosed his condition. “He got drunk out of the blue. His wife was so dismayed about it, she even bought a Breathalyzer,” Barbara Cordell, dean of nursing at Panola College in Texas, said.
Now, Cordell started researching the condition of human-produced brewer’s yeast. The man was told to stay on a low carb diet and was prescribed antifungal medication. Thankfully, this combination is keeping the man’s intestines clean and sober.