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International Journal of Vascular Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 862504, 4 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/862504
Review Article

The Effect of Alcohol on Postprandial and Fasting Triglycerides

Department of Internal Medicine, Meander Medical Center, Utrechtseweg 160, 3818 ES Amersfoort, The Netherlands

Received 7 July 2011; Accepted 1 August 2011

Academic Editor: Kathleen M. Botham

Copyright © 2012 Albert Van de Wiel. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Alcohol has a significant additive effect on the postprandial triglyceride peak when it accompanies a meal containing fat, especially saturated fat. This results from a decrease in the breakdown of chylomicrons and VLDL remnants due to an acute inhibitory effect of alcohol on lipoprotein lipase activity. Furthermore, alcohol increases the synthesis of large VLDL particles in the liver, which is the main source of triglycerides in the hypertriglyceridemia associated with chronic excessive alcohol intake. In case of chronic consumption, lipoprotein lipase activity seems to adapt itself. The effect of alcohol on adipose tissues is less clear. Sometimes, a severe hypertriglyceridemia induced by alcohol (SHIBA) can be observed, especially in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and/or obesity increasing the risk of pancreatitis.