Effect of Drinking on Adiponectin in Healthy Men and Women

A randomized intervention study of water, ethanol, red wine, and beer with or without alcohol

  1. Armin Imhof, MD,
  2. Ines Plamper, MS,
  3. Steffen Maier, MS,
  4. Gerlinde Trischler and
  5. Wolfgang Koenig, MD
  1. Department of Internal Medicine II, Cardiology, University of Ulm, Ulm, Germany.
  1. Corresponding author: Armin Imhof, armin.imhof{at}


OBJECTIVE Moderate alcohol consumption is associated with reduced incidence of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular mortality and increases adiponectin concentrations, but effects might differ according to sex and beverage consumed.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS A total of 72 healthy individuals (22–56 years) were enrolled in this randomized controlled crossover trial. After washout, two interventions for 3 weeks followed: ethanol (concentration 12.5%), beer (5.6%), or red wine (12.5%) equivalent to 30 g ethanol/day for men and 20 g/day for women or the same de-alcoholized beverages or water. Adiponectin was measured by sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.

RESULTS Among women, adiponectin significantly increased after consuming red wine (29.8%, P < 0.05) and increased among men after ethanol solution (17.4%, P < 0.05) and consuming beer (16.1%, P < 0.05). De-alcoholized beverages had no substantial effect on adiponectin concentrations.

CONCLUSIONS Moderate amounts of ethanol-containing beverages increased adiponectin concentrations, but sex-specific effects might depend on type of beverage consumed.


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    • Received October 14, 2008.
    • Accepted February 20, 2009.
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  1. Diabetes Care vol. 32 no. 6 1101-1103
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