Can You Believe This? Meet the Ex Soldier Whose Stomach Automatically Turns Food Into Alcohol Due to Rare Condition

A former soldier has become a “human beer keg” due to a bizarre medical condition that causes his stomach to turn food into alcohol.
Ray Lewis, 48, suffers from auto-brewery syndrome (ABS), a rare and controversial condition that means his body turns excess carbs into booze.
One meal can leave him paralytic.
The former US army paratrooper, from Eugene, Oregon, claims he ended up losing his job as a truck driver after he crashed after eating his lunch.
His wife Sierra even feared he was a closet alcoholic and put him on a strict detox diet, banning him from having access to his bank account to buy alcohol.
But Ray was still getting “drunk” every day – until he was eventually diagnosed with the bizarre condition in September 2015.
Ray is restricted to a diet of protein, vegetables, and nuts, and is not allowed to touch chocolate, chips, or any other sugars or carbohydrates.
And his wife has even resorted to attaching a GPS tracker to Ray if she has to leave him alone – in case he becomes drunk and wanders off.
“Most people have laughed at us when we say the words ‘auto-brewery’. They only stop making jokes when they realise it is not a joke and that we are both suffering,” Ray said.
“It has the same physiological effects on the body as lifelong binge drinking. The body’s organs don’t know or care where the booze originates.
“The triggers can be infuriatingly inconsistent, but I can’t eat sugary snacks or carb-rich foods I used to enjoy.

“Obviously drinking is out too, but I wouldn’t want to do that. Getting drunk without knowing when or why is just horrible.”
Long term alcohol misuse has been linked to heart disease, stroke and cancer.
Sierra, who runs a soap business and looks after Ray, said: “I only leave him alone at home when I must go to work in town. I rarely leave his side for long.

“I got a GPS tracking device that is clipped to his backpack if I have to leave him unattended in public.

“One minute he is fine and the next it smells like someone has smashed a vodka bottle on the ground.”
Ray and Sierra met in California 17 years ago and married in 2006.
Ray began experiencing ABS symptoms in late 2013, feeling nauseous, sweaty, and repeating conversations up to five times a day.
But the alarm bells did not truly start ringing until Ray crashed his truck in December 2014.
Sierra added: “He would suddenly be intoxicated after spending hours within arms-reach of me as he helped me sell my soaps at various craft fairs.

“We were working side-by-side for eight to 10 hours straight, eating the same exact foods, and sharing beverage cups. I had no idea what was going on.”
Sierra and Ray only came across ABS when a friend mentioned they had seen it on a television show.
After researching the condition they decided that however rare and unlikely it sounded, ABS was the only explanation for Ray’s sudden drunkenness.
Even after swearing he had not let a single drop of booze past his lips Ray’s blood alcohol readings could measure above the legal limit.
In 2015 they were referred to Dr Anup Kanodia in Ohio who diagnosed his condition.
Since his diagnosis Ray has been struggling to adapt to life as an “alcoholic”.

“I used to be an avid outdoorsman. I learned to fish before I could walk, and am always most content in the middle of nowhere,” he said.

“But it’s almost impossible to lead that life now.

“I have to self-test for blood alcohol levels ten times a day and then again if someone asks me to.

“I’m getting better at noticing when flare-ups are starting, but I can go upstairs for five minutes and before I have started to come back down I’m unable to walk or talk.

“Spikes leave me unsteady and very confused, to the point where I lose track of time and forget to eat or drink.

“Fortunately I have great friends around who help take care of me. I’m exceedingly grateful for those caring souls.”
***
Culled from The Sun UK

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The Author

Chinenye Nwabueze

Nwabueze is a communication researcher with several years of lecturing experience in Nigerian universities.

59 Comments

Add a Comment
  1. Unbelievable… GroupI

  2. Omenuko Adaobi Promise

    Wow… Amazing
    Group A

  3. Onuorah Adaeze Chidimma

    This is actually unbelievable wonders shall never end…
    Group M

  4. Amene Chidera Doris

    Nawa oo..I a have not heard of this before
    Team H

  5. UMEAKU SOMTO ONYEDIKA

    Chai this one pass me oo
    Some Nigerians would like to be in his shoes
    TEAM_C

  6. This is really bad….lord have mercy and take control.
    group i

  7. This is indeed a rare condition. Nothing person no go see a big hear for this world o!

  8. Ehya… He can’t eat his favourite meals again ,so painful
    group..k

  9. This is indeed a rare condition.
    Nothing person no go see a big hear for this world o!
    Group J

  10. Ezike Onyeka Emmanuel

    Wonders never end. stomach turns food into Alcohol, in this world.

    Group F.

  11. Arinze obiageli .p.

    Team H
    Interesting.I still can’t even believe this story

  12. Hmmmm…. this is a very weird and rare condition. it’s well.

  13. God help him.. Alcohol is really bad and it has many disadvantages

    Team H

  14. Wow! This is amazing. Hope they find the cure

    Group: E

  15. hmm team l

  16. A word is enough for the wise.

    group B

  17. Drinking alcohol damages the body system
    TEAM L

  18. Nawa ooooo
    This is so strange

    Group G

  19. This is serious.people should try to reduce the way they take alcohol.

    TEAM F.

  20. Lol omg Na eh the man body dey chill well Na…its a shame tho won’t want to be him

  21. This is just esoteric. God please help rare.it’s just beyond imagination.
    group H

  22. chiaa very bad for him….e go be steady highness
    team..H

  23. Ezenwajiugo Somto Prosper

    speechless (group D

  24. Law-obilero Chiemena

    its a pity team d

  25. Nwangene blessing George

    This is incredible may God heal him.
    Group H

  26. Nwangene blessing George

    Mmmmm! There is nothing we will not see in this world, this is incredible.
    Group H

  27. This is a serious issue oo. Group G

  28. Chukwurah chinwike Christopher

    Nice

  29. Akwue kingsley chukwuebuka

    since drinking is a habit to him,he should put in practice how to stop or lessen..

  30. Akwue kingsley chukwuebuka

    since drinking is a habit to him,he should put in practice how to stop or lessen..group f

  31. Ataka Fortunatus Tobenna

    Nawa ooo There is nothing we will not see in this world.
    Group K

  32. hmmmm…sorry to him..but its kul he should keep drinking group B

  33. Chidozie Chiazokam Jennifer

    Nawa oo God have mercy
    group A

  34. Nwankwo chinaza blessing

    Chaii God help him
    Group J

  35. its so bad and serious
    group G

  36. more rare condition are coming as far as this world is concern..
    group M

  37. Ehya… He can’t eat his favourite meals again ,so
    painful
    Team L

  38. Iweorah Ezinne Esther

    I can’t believe this. Team L.

  39. This is awful,alcohol is not good for d system

  40. As hilarious as his condition seems it goes without saying that he suffers a lot. I wish him better health. group K

  41. nawa ohh!!! mpa sorry oh..

    group D

  42. This world is turning to something else,”
    human beer”
    Group A

  43. The wife is now his guardian angel..
    God give her the enduring heart..

    Group F.

  44. No more spending much on shayo…
    Cuz e dy at his door step
    Team E

  45. Wonders upon wonders. Only God know whats next.

    Team: A

  46. Onyia Ogochukwu Mary

    Nawa o. This is unbelievable.
    Group A

  47. unbelievable. devine intervention is needed here.
    group C

  48. Very funny I most say.. if he was a Nigerian they will say its his village people’s work..
    feel very sad for him though, imagining how he felt initially when accused of taking alcohol..
    group c

  49. Ohm the man no need to buy beer again o everyday highness..may God help him sha …group j

  50. hmm, unbelievable, wonder shall never end
    group I

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