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The Genetics of Alcoholism - Essay Example

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In the paper “The Genetics of Alcoholism” the author analyzes heritage that determines a person’s alcohol tolerance. Some people can become noticeably inebriated after drinking a couple of beers while others seem to be able to drink hard liquor all night and still be coherent…
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The Genetics of Alcoholism
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Download file to see previous pages Building a tolerance for alcohol can explain this discrepancy to a point but biology plays a bigger role. It’s been speculated that heritage determines a person’s alcohol tolerance. Though some have dismissed this theory as racist and stereotyping it may have some validity. The Irish and Germans seem to “handle their liquor” better than say, Native Americans. The alcohol limit for beer sold in Oklahoma is 3.2 percent. Oklahoma has a large Native American population.
Scientists agree with the stereotype. They have discovered a certain gene carried by up to 20 percent of the U.S. population that has a “big, big effect” on the way people handle their alcohol. This minority is programmed to be especially susceptible to the effects of alcohol. “The gene carries the blueprint for an enzyme called CYP2E1, known to be involved in metabolizing ethanol alcohol.” (Rubin, 2010).
This finding changes the perception that people who can’t “handle” their liquor are somehow weak in other areas of life. Drinking games are designed to determine who is the strongest in the group. The winners claim bragging rights over their weakling friends. According to the scientists findings, bragging about how much you can drink is like bragging about having red hair, dark skin or being tall. Not only is being able to drink large amounts nothing to brag about in the first place, it’s now proven it has nothing to do with being strong or weak. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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