The Effect of Alcohol on the Body

Middle School Physiology Science Fair Project
Photo © 2006 Josh Staiger, Flickr

For students interested in health science, researching and compiling the documented effects of alcohol - in varying amounts - on the body can be an engaging and very informative science fair project!

Blood Alcohol Content

Because one serving of alcohol affects a 100-pound female differently than a 230-pound male (this is due to obvious variations in weight, sex, and body fat), the physical volume of alcohol consumed cannot be used as a proper comparative measurement. Instead, a person's blood alcohol content (BAC) is measured to determine actual alcohol intake and intoxication. BAC, usually expressed as a percentage, measures the volume of alcohol in the blood stream as compared to the volume of blood. Legally, if a person's BAC is over 0.08, they are considered intoxicated.

Project Overview

Designed by middle school student, Carmen Perry, this project explores:

  • How behavior is affected at various BAC levels.
  • How the body is affected at various BAC levels.
  • How prolonged exposure to alcohol affects the body (including the effects on the brain, lungs, heart, stomach, intestines, bones, muscles, and liver).
  • Correct serving sizes for alcoholic beverages (and the difference between a glass of wine and a serving of wine).
  • How a breathalyzer works as well as a discussion of other sobriety tests.

For Perry's results, be sure to check out her full project page at Online Digital Education Connection's Virtual Science Fair!

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