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Drug Alcohol Depend. 1983 Dec;12(4):355-62.

Dietary choices and likelihood of abstinence among alcoholic patients in an outpatient clinic.


Animal experimentation and informal clinical observation both suggest a possible relation between diet and drinking. Sixty-four newly sober out-patients at the Elmhurst Alcoholism Treatment Program were interviewed at each clinic visit using the 24-h dietary recall method. Patients were interviewed an average of 3 times each. We analyzed for calories, carbohydrates, sucrose, sugar added to beverages, protein, fats, vitamins and minerals. Patients were grouped according to the number of days they remained sober from their last drink. Those who stayed sober longer chose diets containing twice as much sugar added to beverages and more overall carbohydrates (P less than 0.05). At this time we cannot say whether longer sobriety increased appetite for sugar or whether the choice of sugar influenced the patients' ability to stay sober.

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