Absorption and Distribution of Alcohol

The basic principles of alcohol absorption from the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and subsequent distribution are well understood. Beverages containing etha-nol pass down the oesophagus into the stomach. The endogenous flora of the GI tract can also transform food into a mixture of alcohols including ethanol. This is particularly important if there are anatomical variations in the upper GI tract (e.g., diverticulae).

Alcohol continues down the GI tract until absorbed. The ethanol concentration therefore

Table 2 Geographical variation in the amount of ethanol in one unita


Amount of alcohol (g)


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