Alcoholism

John Eels

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I know of a person who is an alcaholic. He started drinking again a year ago. I am concerened about his health. He is in his fifties. He sleeps very poorly if at all. He's got issues with acid reflux. His mental state isn't in a much better condition either. He has flashbacks and difficulties being present. His psychiatrist recommends him psychotroopic substances but he refuses to take any medication as he has had bad experiences with them (tremendous weight gain, apathy, and blurred vision).

What are possible dietary, supplementary tactics to address above mentioned issues?
 

Sunjoy

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John Eels said:
I know of a person who is an alcaholic. He started drinking again a year ago. I am concerened about his health. He is in his fifties. He sleeps very poorly if at all. He's got issues with acid reflux. His mental state isn't in a much better condition either. He has flashbacks and difficulties being present. His psychiatrist recommends him psychotroopic substances but he refuses to take any medication as he has had bad experiences with them (tremendous weight gain, apathy, and blurred vision).

What are possible dietary, supplementary tactics to address above mentioned issues?

Check out this thread viewtopic.php?t=72 which quotes Peat with the following:

In the absence of polyunsaturated fats, alcohol doesn't produce cirrhosis. Saturated fats allow the fibrosis to regress:
“A diet enriched in saturated fatty acids effectively reverses alcohol-induced necrosis, inflammation, and fibrosis despite continued alcohol consumption. The therapeutic effects of saturated fatty acids may be explained, at least in part, by reduced endotoxemia and lipid peroxidation....” (Nanji, et al., 1995, 2001)
 
R

ratcheer

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I've always enjoyed a little alcohol but wasn't ever a heavy drinker UNTIL I STARTED LOW-CARB DIETING. It was uncanny and at the time I had no idea there was a relationship. But over that year I started drinking about a bottle of dry red wine (i.e., it wasn't the sugar) every night. I started to get worried - this was new and odd for me, but I couldn't stop it no matter what I tried.

One interesting aspect of this drinking: I *loved* it. It was pure liquid pleasure and I can't express how joyous I felt after the first couple glasses. I tried all kind of self-psychology around that too - I must be drinking because of unhappiness in my real life etc.

Then, I switched to Peat. I had been listening to his interviews and was deeply impressed by the nerdy contrarian logic of it all. So I started adding fruit and later sugar and eliminating PUFA all the usual stuff. After only a month of this I suddenly realized: I hadn't had a drink in weeks! I not only lost ALL craving for alcohol, but I didn't even think about it. When I did have booze, say in a social situation, it no longer had that euphoric effect and basically just made me tired.

I'm pretty sure it's the sugar more than anything else that made the difference.
 
J

j.

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ratcheer said:
I'm pretty sure it's the sugar more than anything else that made the difference. [/size]

I wouldn't underestimate PUFA elimination.
 
R

ratcheer

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I'm sure all the different parts interact, including PUFA. But the reason I think it's the sugar is because the change was so FAST. Really a week or so - perhaps days (I'm not sure because I didn't even notice at first). I hadn't gotten diligent at eliminating as much PUFA as possible, and since PUFA stays in the body a long time I'd expect that to work over months or years not right away. I didn't get my first thyroid meds until a month later.

At the time I was trying to understand alcohol metabolism better because this sudden compulsion (and joy) around it was really perplexing. But it was really hard to find good info. It's not exactly 'sugar' that's for sure.
 

Combie

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It will have been the sugar. Your body turned to alcohol as it knew it was a source of quick energy. It really wanted sugar, but because you were low carb you denied it, because "carbs are bad". But as you have found out, they are anything but bad.
 

John Eels

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@ratcheer
That's an interesting story. I would never have guessed that low overall carbohydrate consumption may be related with alcohol craving. You discovered a very simple fix for your problem. Eat more sugar and alcohol looses its palatability.
 
R

ratcheer

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I remember in Good Carbs Bad Carbs Taubes talked about how alcoholics tend also to be 'addicted' to sugar - and gave the example of AA meetings where there were always donuts and pastries on hand. He was making the point that alcohol was a kind of sugar addiction. But after my experience I think that sugar is *protective* against alcohol addiction (at least the mild form I got), at least to the extant that alcohol is acting as a sugar replacement.

It could be an interesting experiment to give alcoholics a lot of sugar and see if it impacts their drinking (I mean 'real' sugar not HFCS). If one wanted to call that "addiction" that's fine - just keep in mind that being addicted to sugar is a LOT different than being addicted to alcohol. Sugar is cheaper, improves metabolism, and doesn't destroy lives or make people drive drunk. Really if it makes a difference in drinking it's a no-brainer, though no doubt some in the sugar-is-bad crowd wouldn't be sure.
 
J

j.

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I think being addicted to sugar is more like being addicted to eating, in the sense of wanting to eat every day.
 

Primal2Peat

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I totally agree with Ratcheer's comments.

I'm a former alcoholic. I pushed myself to the absolute brink of death, and am lucky I'm still here. Toward the end I had the DT's and was hallucinating in my bedroom all alone, having convulsions etc. I finally chose life over death and directed my family to take me to detox.

I was also battling ulcerative colitis, so I was bleeding into the toilet everyday. I was eating a paleo/primal diet, which helped, but I couldn't stop drinking. It was a tug of war. I couldn't understand what my body was telling me, and all the nutritional advice was screwing me up of course.

Anyway, I think the road to recovery would have been easier if I had been following a strict Ray Peat diet.

The Primal diet was good because I had a moderate amount of sugar from honey and milk, but Ray Peat amounts would have been better. Plus, I was getting way too much PUFA from all the egg consumption.

So, lots of sugar/protein and saturated fat should help.

I pretty much live off of raw milk/honey/gelatin/salt, raw liver every few days, cuts of steak, cheese, little bit of raw carrot everyday, little bit of coconut oil, little bit of orange juice. That's it.

*Oh yeah, I also drink lots of coffee now, which is glorious. I had quit that when my colitis hit me, thinking it was a cause. I drink it with milk, honey and gelatin now, and it's wonderful. Back in the day I drank it black, which wasn't good.
 
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ratcheer

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Wow, Primal2Peat - What an amazing story and I'm glad you survived!
 

narouz

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ratcheer said:
I've always enjoyed a little alcohol but wasn't ever a heavy drinker UNTIL I STARTED LOW-CARB DIETING. It was uncanny and at the time I had no idea there was a relationship. But over that year I started drinking about a bottle of dry red wine (i.e., it wasn't the sugar) every night. I started to get worried - this was new and odd for me, but I couldn't stop it no matter what I tried.

One interesting aspect of this drinking: I *loved* it. It was pure liquid pleasure and I can't express how joyous I felt after the first couple glasses. I tried all kind of self-psychology around that too - I must be drinking because of unhappiness in my real life etc.

Then, I switched to Peat. I had been listening to his interviews and was deeply impressed by the nerdy contrarian logic of it all. So I started adding fruit and later sugar and eliminating PUFA all the usual stuff. After only a month of this I suddenly realized: I hadn't had a drink in weeks! I not only lost ALL craving for alcohol, but I didn't even think about it. When I did have booze, say in a social situation, it no longer had that euphoric effect and basically just made me tired.

I'm pretty sure it's the sugar more than anything else that made the difference.

ratch-
I had an experience a little like that.
I too began to drink more after low carbing.
Along the lines of a big Heinekin every night or every other night,
sometimes more.
Also getting slightly stoned at the same time.
Really felt like I need it to relax.

After about 1/2 a year of Peating
I'm now drinking/stoning only once a week.
It wasn't really hard either.

I think it may be over on my marijuana thread that I've theorized about this,
and others have added some similar experiences
about marijuana and Peating.
 

narouz

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Zanjabil said:
I've heard of glutamine used for alcohol/sugar cravings.

But I'm pretty sure glutamine is kinduv a "bad" amino acid in PeatWorld,
along with tryptophan.
I can't remember exactly why...
I think those two aminos stimulate serotonin and estrogen.
It's in one of Peat's articles.
 

Combie

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narouz said:
Zanjabil said:
I've heard of glutamine used for alcohol/sugar cravings.

But I'm pretty sure glutamine is kinduv a "bad" amino acid in PeatWorld,
along with tryptophan.
I can't remember exactly why...
I think those two aminos stimulate serotonin and estrogen.
It's in one of Peat's articles.
Cysteine methionine and tryptophan are slated by peat but not heard that about glutamine..it's the amino we make most of.
 

cliff

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narouz said:
Zanjabil said:
I've heard of glutamine used for alcohol/sugar cravings.

But I'm pretty sure glutamine is kinduv a "bad" amino acid in PeatWorld,
.

glutamines fine, taking isolated amino is probably a no no tho
 

Combie

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cliff said:
narouz said:
Zanjabil said:
I've heard of glutamine used for alcohol/sugar cravings.

But I'm pretty sure glutamine is kinduv a "bad" amino acid in PeatWorld,
.

glutamines fine, taking isolated amino is probably a no no tho
Any specific dangers of glut supplementation?
 

HDD

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Also, would glutamine be helpful in healing the gut for someone with Crohn's?
 

narouz

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Zanjabil said:
I've heard of glutamine used for alcohol/sugar cravings.

In every case I know about, the vegetable polyunsaturated fats have harmful effects on our physiology.

For example, they bind to the “receptor” proteins for cortisol, progesterone, and estrogen, and to all of the major proteins related to thyroid function, and to the vesicles that take up nerve transmitter substances, such as glutamic acid.

They allow glutamic acid to injure and kill cells through excessive stimulation; this process is similar to the nerve damage done by cobra venom, and other toxins. -Peat, "Glycemia, starch, and sugar in context"

...from the references following the above article...

"Stroke 2002 Jan;33(1):261-7. Inhibition of glutamate release via recovery of ATP levels accounts for a neuroprotective effect of aspirin in rat cortical neurons exposed to oxygen-glucose deprivation. De Cristobal J, Cardenas A, Lizasoain I, Leza JC, Fernandez-Tome P, Lorenzo P, Moro MA. “Aspirin is preventive against stroke not only because of its antithrombotic properties but also by other direct effects.” “Aspirin inhibited OGD-induced neuronal damage at concentrations lower (0.3 mmol/L) than those reported to act via inhibition of the transcription factor nuclear factor-kappaB (which are >1 mmol/L), an effect that correlated with the inhibition caused by aspirin on glutamate release."

From another Peat article:

"Recent research shows that progesterone and its metabolites also act on the “glycine receptor,” increasing inhibition, and that the “phytoestrogen,” genistein, antagonizes the inhibitory effect of glycine.

The inhibitory systems are opposed by excitatory systems, especially by the excitatory amino acid system, activated by glutamic and aspartic acid. Progesterone and estrogen act on that system, too, decreasing and increasing excitation, respectively."-Peat, "Gelatin, stress, longevity"

"If we think of the proteins known as the GABA and glycine receptors as having some regions in which the basic amine of lysine associates with the acidic group of aspartic or glutamic acid, then the action of glycine, or other amino acids would be to introduce additional lipophilic carbon atoms into those regions (with the amino acids' polar ends pairing with their opposites on the protein), where the cardinal adsorbents exert their influence." -Peat, "Gelatin, stress, longevity"

I confess I don't know the difference between "glutamine" and "glutamic acid."
But the quotes above would give me pause about glutamine.
Glutamine, in Peat's view, is part of the "excitatory amino acid system" along with aspartic acid
(is that the same as or similar in action to aspartame?).
 

chris

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When I was low carb I wanted to drink so much more than now.

I've also read recently histamine may be involved with addictions, so antihistamines may be something to try, if you can convince him to take them.
 

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