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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Ketogenic Diet Suppresses Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome in Rats

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  3. Alcohol use disorders and comorbidity

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BACKGROUND: Alcohol use disorder is underdiagnosed and undertreated, and up to 50% of alcohol-abstinent patients diagnosed with alcohol dependence relapse within the first year of treatment. Current treatments for the maintenance of alcohol abstinence in patients with alcohol use disorder have limited efficacy, and there is an urgent need for novel treatment strategies. Decreased cerebral glucose metabolism and increased brain uptake of acetate were recently reported in heavy drinkers, relative to controls. Given the switch of metabolic fuel from glucose to acetate in the alcohol-dependent brain, we investigated the potential therapeutic benefit of a ketogenic diet in managing alcohol withdrawal symptoms during detoxification.

METHODS: Male Sprague Dawley rats fed either ketogenic or regular diet were administered ethanol or water orally, twice daily for 6 days while the diet conditions were maintained. Abstinence symptoms were rated 6, 24, 48, and 72 hours after the last alcohol administration.

RESULTS: Maintenance on a ketogenic diet caused a significant decrease in the alcohol withdrawal symptoms' "rigidity" and "irritability."

CONCLUSIONS: Our preclinical pilot study suggests that a ketogenic diet may be a novel approach for treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms in humans.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
ISSN0145-6008
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2017

    Research areas

  • Journal Article

ID: 52334663