Differing effects of carbohydrate, fat and protein on the rate of ethanol metabolism

Alcohol Alcohol. 1987;22(4):345-53.


The rate of metabolism of ethanol in humans has been assessed by intravenous infusion of ethanol/saline under feedback control to maintain a constant blood alcohol concentration. After equilibration, meals consisting predominantly of carbohydrate, fat or protein were eaten and changes in ethanol metabolic rate were found. Carbohydrate caused a significant increase in this rate and fat or protein caused small but non-significant decreases. Infusion of ethanol/saline resulted in a temporary fall in plasma free fatty acid levels and a steady rise in plasma triglycerides. The changes in alcohol metabolism following carbohydrate cannot be accounted for by changes in insulin, free fatty acid or lactate/pyruvate levels.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Breath Tests
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Fats / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Proteins / pharmacology*
  • Ethanol / administration & dosage
  • Ethanol / blood*
  • Humans
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Male
  • Middle Aged


  • Blood Glucose
  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Fats
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Ethanol