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Alcohol Consumption After Eating Reduces Insulin Levels

Posted: Wednesday, November 26, 2003

"We know that drinking alcohol can affect the body's production of insulin," lead author Dr. Anna Kokavec said in a statement. "However, researchers in the past have obtained mixed results and it is only now becoming clear that the effect of alcohol on insulin may depend on the presence or absence of food."

In the current study, Dr. Kokavec and Dr. Simon F. Crowe, from La Trobe University in Bundoora, Australia, measured plasma insulin and glucose levels in eight non-diabetic subjects who consumed a test meal and then drank three standard units of wine (30 g of alcohol). Levels were measured before and after the meal and during and after wine consumption.

Drinking just half of the total alcohol amount caused a significant drop in insulin levels. In fact, this level "was similar to the level of insulin usually seen before a meal," Dr. Kokavec noted.

The fall in insulin levels was "accompanied by a similar lowering of the blood-glucose level and, in some individuals, to a very dangerously low level," she added.

In addition to health implications for alcohol consumers, the new findings highlight the need to control for nutritional status when conducting alcohol research, the authors conclude.

Source: Diabetes In

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