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Ari (Eric Litton)

Toxic thujone levels in absinthe

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I posted this elsewhere and thought it would go good here, yes another post about that demonic chemical.

 

A rough estimate of the dangers of absinthe and it's most famous chemical thujone, using an imaginary 60% mid-strength absinthe with 10 mg/l thujone diluted 4-1 and an imaginary 150 pound person. A 1oz dose glass would thus contain aprox 0.6 oz alcohol, 4.4 oz water and 0.3mg thujone.

 

Using water as a base,

58.2 glasses = 2 gallons water = dead 1 time.*

58.2 glasses = 1.03L pure alcohol = dead 4 times (1.6 BAC)

58.2 glasses = 17.5 mg thujone = dead 0.006 times (not dead).**

 

Let's rearrange this to use evil thujone as a base,

10,200 glasses = 3060 mg thujone = dead 1 time**

10,200 glasses = 350.6 gallons water = dead 175 times.*

10,200 glasses = 181L pure alcohol = dead 698 times (279 BAC)

 

In other words, the water you add to your absinthe is more dangerous than, how does the FDA put it? oh yes, a "toxic chemical called thujone," which causes "harmful neurological effects."

 

*Based on an unfortunate death where a lady here in Northern California drank almost 2 gallons of water for a radio contest and suffered from water intoxication.

**Based on the LD50 for Mice in a 2000 study, and ignoring the evidence suggesting alcohol can protect against large doses of thujone.

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Deja Vu. I watched CSI season 4 (I think) and it mentioned absinthe in it, and talked up the thujone.

 

 

I <3 the CSIs

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You should ban the water, then :)

Nice calculations, if these with pure alcohol should exlude some people as you realize: approx. one liter of pure alcohol (95% or 98%?) makes 2 litres of midstrength vodka which is life threatening (almost 10 pro milles in a maximum concentration) but not killing.

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In light of this information, and for the betterment of my own health; I am going to limit my daily water intake. I will now only drink enough water to louche my absinthe, and no more.

 

Hey, I'm not taking any chances here.

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I'm seriously thinking about posting Ari's info on my office door. My students wouldn't be surprised. Now that I think about it, neither would the administration.

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This confirms the rule of thumb I use: to never drink more than 15 standard glasses of absinthe at any one time. (Based on the desire to die less than one time from the most "lethal" component, and that I'm slightly heavier than the hypothesized person. :) )

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I think you were watching maybe....THIS episode?

Naw, it was a Vegas episode where Greg is giving peeps the low down on thujone. It was about some chick that belonged to some vampire group and was found dead with vampire marks on her neck. A suspect drank absinthe.

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