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Effects of alcohol consumption and accompanying diet on metabolic response to arginine in chronic alcoholics

Effects of alcohol consumption and accompanying diet on metabolic response to arginine in chronic alcoholics

Journal of Studies on Alcohol 60(5): 581-585

Objective: To evaluate, in chronic alcoholics, the effects of accompanying diet on the release of insulin (IRI) and glucagon (IRG) and on the hepatic glucose production. Method: We evaluated variations of the response to the infusion of arginine into 16 male and 8 female chronic alcoholics divided into three groups of eight subjects each before and after three weeks of treatment with: (1) an isocaloric diet plus 200 g/day of ethanol; (2) an hypocaloric diet without alcohol (17.5 kcal/kg/day); and (3) an isocaloric diet (35 kcal/kg/day). Statistical evaluation was done by Kruskall-Wallis ANOVA and by Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed rank test. Results: After isocaloric diet plus ethanol both IRI/IRG ratios and plasma glucose during arginine testing remained unmodified; after the hypocaloric diet IRI/IRG remained unmodified and the arginine-induced plasma glucose rise was slightly but significantly reduced; after the isocaloric diet there was a strong decrease of the arginine-induced plasmaglucose rise because of a significant increase in the insulin/glucagon ratio. Conclusions: In chronic alcoholics the replacement of the usual hypocaloric diet with an isocaloric one while maintaining alcohol consumption does not modify the metabolic response to arginine administration; the hypocaloric diet without alcohol increases insulin and glucagon release and slightly decreases liver glycogenolysis; the replacement of the usual hypocaloric diet with an isocaloric one together with alcohol withdrawal stimulates insulin, inhibits glucagon release and lowers glycogenolysis much more than observed with hypocaloric diet alone.

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Accession: 010544830

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PMID: 10487725

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