Desserts that could put your customers over the drink-drive limit

By Nikkie Sutton

- Last updated on GMT

Just desserts: eating two tiramisus could put drivers over the drink-drive limit
Just desserts: eating two tiramisus could put drivers over the drink-drive limit
Pubs need to be wary of their booze-filled puddings after new research found certain foods could put customers over the drink-drive limit.

According to vehicle leasing company All Car Leasing, Google search trends reveal many Brits are unsure of which foods cannot be eaten before getting behind the wheel.

Top searches include ‘can you drive after eating a tiramisu?’ ‘can you drive after eating a Christmas pudding?’ and ‘can you drive after eating food with alcohol?’

Being in charge of a vehicle while above the legal alcohol limit (of 80 milligrammes of alcohol per 100ml of blood, 35 microgrammes per 100ml of breath or 107 milligrammes per 100ml of urine for England and Wales), or unfit through drink can mean a three-month prison sentence, up to £2,500 fine and a possible driving ban.

The legal alcohol limit in Scotland differs as in December 2014, the limit was reduced to 50 milligrammes of alcohol in every 100ml of blood. The breath alcohol equivalent to 22 microgrammes of alcohol per 100ml of breath.

Varying level

However, there is no fool-proof way of drinking and staying under the drink-drive limit. And the amount of alcohol that needs to be consumed to be over the drink-driving limit varies from person to person.

It can depend on weight; age; sex; metabolism; the type and amount of alcohol consumed; what has been recently eaten; and stress levels.

The research looking into food that contained traces of alcohol to determine how many portions one person must eat before they may be over the limit.

They include:

  • 2 tiramisus
  • 1 cherry trifle
  • 5.5 servings of Christmas cake
  • 1.5 bottles of hot sauce
  • 4 servings of peppercorn sauce
  • 9 portions of chicken marsala
  • 58 packets of olives
  • 2 pints of orange juice
  • 850 alcohol-filled chocolates

The leasing company used popular online recipes and assumed the average drink-drive limit to be 3.5 alcoholic units. The alcohol quantity in each recipe was applied to the same method to work out the quantities someone would need to eat before blowing red on the breathalyser.

Alcohol intake

All Car Leasing digital marketing manager Ronnie Lawson-Jones said: “We wanted to highlight the potential unknown risks around driving while under the influence due to certain foods and drinks.

“You’re unlikely to get through a bottle of hot sauce during one sitting, but two pints or orange juice? It is plausible.

“As a rule of thumb, two pints of regular-strength lager or two small glasses of wine would put you over the limit.

“Remember this doesn’t apply for those living in Scotland, as on 5 December 2014, Scotland applied stricter alcohol limits for drivers, which is considered a lot less than the UK’s drink-drive limit.

“While a light-hearted study, we felt people may want to know that some foods could add to their alcohol intake more than first thought.”

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