Given the observed differences in alcohol consumption characteristics between the Han and Uyghur nationalities in clinical reports and in daily life, the subjective and objective responses to alcohol in heavy drinkers (HDs) and light drinkers (LDs) in the Han and Uyghur nationalities in China were compared.
A within-subject, double-blind, placebo-controlled human laboratory paradigm was performed. Each subject completed three experimental sessions in random order. Biphasic Alcohol Effects Scale and Positive and Negative Affect Schedule scales were administered, and heart rate (HR), blood pressure, and salivary cortisol levels were measured at predrink baseline and 30, 60, 120, and 180 minutes after the initial alcohol beverage consumption.
Compared with LDs, HDs exhibited higher stimulation, positive affect, and lower sedation in both ethnicities. Han drinkers (both HDs and LDs) exhibited higher sedation and lower positive affect and stimulation than Uyghur drinkers after consumption of alcohol. Moreover, HDs exhibited more HR increase during the ascending limb of breath alcohol content (p
< .05) and less cortisol level during the declining limb of breath alcohol content (p
< .05). Both HDs and LDs exhibited decreased systolic and diastolic pressures for both high- and low-dose beverages (p
s < .01).
Compared with LDs, HDs exhibited more HR increase and lower salivary cortisol level after alcohol consumption. Han drinkers (both HDs and LDs) exhibited higher sedation and lower positive affect and stimulation after consumption of alcohol as compared with Uyghur drinkers. This modality of subjective and physiological responses to alcohol in the Han and Uyghur ethnicities is similar.