Brewing while sick? - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Brewing while sick?

View Poll Results: Do you brew/handle beer operations while sick?
Yes, never had a problem. 19 70.37%
Yes, but had an issue. 0 0%
No, I wouldn't risk my beer. 8 29.63%
Voters: 27. You may not vote on this poll

Thread Tools
Old 11-30-2011, 12:03 AM   #1
chrislehr's Avatar
Feb 2010
Posts: 350
Liked 10 Times on 9 Posts

Hey all,

I have been putting off kegging a batch because I've been a little sick and am coughing pretty often. My wife thinks that as much time as I spend sterilizing things that it would be fine. However, now I am not sure. I presume cooks/kitchen folk work pretty often a little under the weather, but their food is served right away, where beer has time to stew with a bacteria and go bad.

So, do you? would you? Incoming poll
I brewed all the beer at my wedding.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 12:17 AM   #2
ace3's carboy
Feb 2007
Kingwood/Cypress, TX
Posts: 26
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

I'd avoid coughing into the beer, but with the shear volume of bacteria floating around in the air anyway, I don't think your being sick (save coughing into the beer) should be an issue.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 12:17 AM   #3
Aug 2009
Posts: 604
Liked 14 Times on 13 Posts

There's always junk floating around in the air and already on your body. Being sick really doesn't increase the chance of infection unless you hack up in the fermentor.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 12:19 AM   #4
mccumath's Avatar
Dec 2010
Posts: 1,061
Liked 198 Times on 191 Posts

If concerned, wear some sort of mask or mouth covering of some kind, wash your hands frequently, and cough/sneeze into your upper arm, not your hands. Those are basic guidelines for healthcare workers, and I would not be too concerned doing the same if I had some work to do with my brewing.

Besides, from what I hear (and I have never seen actual literature on this, so if anyone out there has something on it, I would love to see it!), no known human pathogens can survive in beer. Does not mean that other bacteria can't invade your beer. However, that relies solely on your sanitation methods.

IMO, go for it, and take the few extra precautions mentioned above.

No Worries!

Ryan M.
Put it all in the primary, and let the BeerGods sort it out

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 12:30 AM   #5
drhookmec's Avatar
Nov 2011
Pont., MI
Posts: 282
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Yes i have brewed while i was sick but did not have a problem.

But as you know the risk is allways there.
Most viruses live inside the body not out side
so as long as you sanitize your equipment well and your self by washing your hands you should be fine.


Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 01:24 AM   #6
LuxAeterna's Avatar
Aug 2011
Athens, OH
Posts: 33
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

I highly doubt any viruses would survive, the environment in the fermentor is too rough for them. Granted, I wouldn't go hacking up some sticky ole lungbutter into your wort, but beyond that everything should be fine.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 01:44 AM   #7
Oct 2009
Posts: 140
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

I've probably told my boss I was sick once so I could brew but never felt like brewing when I'm sick.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 01:47 AM   #8
Sep 2011
Peterborough, ON
Posts: 228
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts

As above, just wear a dustmask or something if you're super concerned.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 02:54 AM   #9
Jan 2011
Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 1,538
Liked 171 Times on 82 Posts

If you brew when you're sick then how would you prove any potential problems with the beer were caused by your sickness?

Wouldn't star-san or any other sanitizing agent kill the cold/flu bugs just like any other bugs?

Is brewing while sick a real concern if you practice good sanitation like washing your hands not sneezing in your wort?

Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 03:06 AM   #10
Zamial's Avatar
Apr 2010
Posts: 3,183
Liked 178 Times on 158 Posts

I am going to side with nothing that is in a normal beer can make you sick. I am not a Dr. nor do I care to use the Google machine to back this up but I will bet that the virus and all the bacteria that would cause sickness in humans will be sterilized by the fermentation and/or the alcohol. As above I would be cautious and wear a mask if I was sick just because I am paranoid.
I'm not drunk, I'm from Wisconsin.
We have been out drinking your state since 1848!

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Beers that get you sick Arneba28 General Beer Discussion 106 05-14-2010 03:03 PM
Damn I'm sick of this heat passedpawn General Beer Discussion 33 12-17-2009 01:32 AM
Did I get sick from Shock Top? MistyMountainHops General Beer Discussion 16 08-22-2009 05:41 AM
Is it bad to brew when sick? DeathBrewer General Beer Discussion 13 01-05-2008 09:18 PM
Anyone else call in sick colonel_colon General Beer Discussion 33 04-06-2007 02:52 AM

Forum Jump