Published on November 3, 2023, 12:38 am
A driver’s argument that his low-carb keto diet caused a high blood alcohol content reading has been rejected by a B.C. Supreme Court judge. Kenneth Robert Chemko had requested that his three-day roadside suspension be thrown out, claiming that a ketogenic diet can result in a false positive on a breathalyzer test. However, the judge upheld the suspension, stating that there was no evidence to support Chemko’s claims and that the breathalyzer reading was likely due to alcohol consumption rather than ketosis.
Chemko had consumed multiple alcoholic drinks over the course of an evening and early morning before being pulled over by police. He argued that his body was in ketosis at the time of the incident, but the adjudicator reviewing his case did not consider this claim as valid evidence. Despite Chemko’s assertion that white wine and artificial sweeteners were allowed on his low-carb diet, the judge determined that these details did not alter the conclusion that alcohol, not ketosis, caused the “warn” level on the breathalyzer.
In her ruling, Justice Amy Francis noted the lack of specific evidence regarding how Chemko’s diet affected his breathalyzer result and emphasized the significant amount of alcohol he had consumed prior to providing a breath sample. She concluded that the reasonable conclusion reached by the adjudicator was that alcohol was responsible for Chemko’s elevated blood alcohol content reading.
It is important to remember that while low-carb diets like keto may lead to weight loss or maintenance, they do not exempt individuals from legal consequences related to impaired driving. This ruling serves as a reminder to exercise caution and make responsible choices when consuming alcohol, regardless of dietary preferences.
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