Research Article

Acute biochemical responses to moderate beer drinking.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1982; 285 doi: (Published 18 December 1982) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1982;285:1770
  1. G V Gill,
  2. P H Baylis,
  3. C T Flear,
  4. A W Skillen,
  5. P H Diggle


    The consequences of drinking six pints of beer (3.31) over three hours were investigated in six healthy men. The expected rise in plasma osmolality, fall in plasma vasopressin concentration, and increase in free water clearance occurred; these variables had returned to normal by nine hours. There was a small but significant fall in plasma concentrations of urea and creatinine accompanied by a rise in plasma potassium concentration. Serum activities of alkaline phosphatase, gamma-glutamyl transferase, creatinine kinase, and lactate dehydrogenase did not change, and there was no alcohol-induced hypoglycaemia. All subjects had a slight hangover, but none was fluid depleted. It is concluded that, apart from inducing changes in water balance, alcohol in this form causes remarkably little metabolic disturbance.