Some alcoholics may self-medicate with carbohydrates between drinks

  • Alcoholics have reduced levels of serotonin, a brain chemical.
  • Alcohol increases serotonin levels, as do carbohydrates.
  • Those alcoholics with high cravings for carbohydrates have a unique response to specific diets.
  • Carbohydrate craving may be an important clue in developing treatments for alcoholic populations.
Alcoholics likely have reduced levels of serotonin, a neurotransmitter believed to regulate sleep, dreaming, mental illness, craving, and eating. Because alcohol increases serotonin levels, some researchers speculate that alcohol-dependent individuals are using alcohol to self-medicate their reduced serotonergic function, bringing it up to a 'normal' level. Like alcohol, carbohydrates increase serotonin levels. A study in the May issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research may have found a sub-group of alcoholics who self-medicate low levels of serotonin with carbohydrates when they're not drinking.

"More and more, we appreciate that alcoholism and alcohol problems are complex disorders that involve physiological and psychological factors," said David J. Drobes, assistant professor of psychology at the Medical University of South Carolina. "Research is now beginning to uncover specific genetic factors and neurobiological mechanisms that contribute to alcoholism. This study helps us to understand how disturbances in one of the important neurochemical systems, the serotonergic system, may be related to increased alcohol craving among certain alcoholics."

"We know that impaired serotonin function can lead to depression, anxiety, aggression, and sleep problems," said Mona Moorhouse, clinical dietician at the Royal Ottawa Hospital and lead author of the study. "Many anti-depressants will enhance serotonin, for example. In addition, we know that serotonin affects food intake, specifically, carbohydrate intake." Moorhouse's study was prompted by observations of patients attending a local addiction trea

Contact: Mona Moorhouse, R.D.
613-722-6521 x6241
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Women who marry alcoholics
2. Suicidal behavior among alcoholics
3. Abnormalities in stress hormone response among alcoholics
4. Program shown to help non-alcoholics reduce drinking 66%
5. Fine-tuning the search for biochemical characteristics of alcoholics
6. Searching for biochemical markers in children of alcoholics
7. Smells may trigger alcohol craving, and relapse, among alcoholics
8. UGA researcher unlocks links between complex carbohydrates and spread of cancer
9. Consuming more protein, less carbohydrates may be healthier
10. Baltimore chemist wins national award for insights into bodys carbohydrates
11. Landmark agreement between Samoa and UC Berkeley could help search for AIDS cure

Post Your Comments:

(Date:8/26/2020)... , ... August 25, 2020 , ... ... manufacturing solutions for drugs, biologics, cell and gene therapies, and consumer health products, ... Annual PEGS Boston Virtual Conference & Expo, taking place between Aug. 31 – ...
(Date:8/21/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... August 19, 2020 , ... ... the premier conference and expo uniting life science, data science, informatics and IT ... sessions. , “In this period of uncertainty and change, Bio-IT takes the leadership ...
(Date:8/7/2020)... ... August 06, 2020 , ... Nine middle school teachers from ... Program, a unique professional development program that provides advanced STEM (science, technology, engineering ... teachers nationwide. , Created in partnership between the National Stem Cell Foundation and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... July 29, 2020 , ... ... the leading global provider of advanced delivery technologies, development, and manufacturing solutions for ... they have entered into a strategic partnership whereby Catalent will provide support for ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... FRANCISCO (PRWEB) , ... July ... ... provider of cloud-based software for the life sciences industry, today announced the ... presentation platform designed specifically for Medical Science Liaisons (MSLs) and other field ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... , ... “We are thrilled to deliver this new technology to the industry” ... kind on the market and we were pleased that the IFT jury recognized that.” ... ingredients, creating a natural way to extend the shelf life and improve the safety ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 08, 2020 , ... Bode ... significant expansion of laboratory operations through its COVID-19 testing service, Bode-CARES . ... , Bode-CARES provides a turnkey solution that includes a comprehensive ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: