The Feeding of Alcohol in Liquid Diets: Two Decades of Applications and 1982 Update

Authors

  • Charles S. Lieber,

    Corresponding author
    1. Alcohol Research and Treatment Center and Section of Liver Disease and Nutrition, Bronx Veterans Administration Medical Center and Mount Sinai School of Medicine, City University of New York, New York, NY.
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  • Leonore M. DeCarli

    1. Alcohol Research and Treatment Center and Section of Liver Disease and Nutrition, Bronx Veterans Administration Medical Center and Mount Sinai School of Medicine, City University of New York, New York, NY.
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  • Supported in part by the Veterans Administration and grants from the National Institute of Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse and the National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Disease.

Alcohol Research and Treatment Center, Veterans Administration Medical Center, 130 West Kingsbridge Road, Bronx, NY 10468.

Abstract

The technique of feeding ethanol as part of a totally liquid diet was invented two decades ago and its successful application for the intervening period is reviewed. This technique results in much higher ethanol intake than with conventional procedures. As a consequence, various complications observed in alcoholics were reproduced in animal models, including fatty liver, hyperlipemia, various metabolic and endocrine disorders, tolerance to ethanol and other drugs, physical dependence and withdrawal, the fetal alcohol syndrome and, in the baboon, liver fibrosis and cirrhosis. Variations of the liquid diet formulation are compared and three standardized basic formulas are being proposed for the rat: (1) a regular diet, comparable to the diet previously referred to as the “Lieber-DeCarli Formula” and suitable for most experimental applications, particularly those intended to mimic the clinical situation in which the various effects of alcohol occur in the setting of liver changes characterized by a fatty liver; (2) a low fat diet comparable in all respects to the preceding diet but with a lower fat content, intended to minimize the hepatic changes; and (3) a high protein formula particularly useful in those circumstances in which an oversupply of dietary protein might be recommended (i.e., pregnancy and lactation).

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