Lecture 14.docx - ALCOHOL INTRODUCTION Use of alcohol is...

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ALCOHOL INTRODUCTION - Use of alcohol is synonymous with agrarian society (organized society) - Speculated that the use of alcohol is linked evolutionarily to a preference for fermenting fruit o The presence of ethanol signals that fruit is ripe but not yet rotten - Arabic countries developed distillation (concentration alcohol) around 800CE o In Muslim cultures, alcohol is not consumed, but still used for other purposes (ie disinfection) - Alcohol means “something subtle” o Alchemists were captivated by the invisible “spirit” and considered it a remedy for almost all diseases - Most wine didn’t pop up in history until about 400CE o Early wine was huckleberry wine - Whiskey is from “usquebaugh” – Gaelic for water of life o Became major ingredient for tonics and elixirs - Alcohol can be derived from grains, berries, potatoes, etc. - Consumable alcohol is ethyl alcohol o Aka grain alcohol o Other types of alcohol Methyl alcohol – wood alcohol, used in antifreeze and fuels Isopropyl alcohol – rubbing alcohol o Only difference between three types of alcohol is carbon backbone 1 C for methyl, 2 for ethyl, 3 isopropyl - Home distillation, people can accidentally consume methyl alcohol o Methyl alcohol has lower BP than ethyl o People start to drink the very first layer of alcohol coming off, experience serious toxic side effects Methyl alcohol is converted in the body to formic acid (like formaldehyde) At these low doses, it has preferential activity on retinal nerves Causes irreversible blindness - Sometimes, people with serious alcohol use disorders will consume isopropyl alcohol out of desperation FERMENTATION - In basic terms: o First, take organic material and mix with sugar o Second, add yeast In nature, yeast is in the air as spores One molecule of sugar consumed leaves two molecules of alcohol and two molecules of carbon dioxide If you keep it bottled, this is the carbonation that makes champagne fizzy This reaction continues until yeast runs out
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Hard to get beer or wine with high alcohol contents because the yeast just won’t go that far (the fruit is pretty small compared to a potato ie) DISTILLATION (JUST COLLECTING PURE ALCOHOL) - In distillation, the fermented beverage is heated to vapor o Alcohol vaporizes before water does This is because alcohol has a lower BP than water o The alcohol is then collected and cooled into liquid form MORE INTRODUCTION - The magna carta gave noblemen more control over the alcohol being produced in given regions o The abbey in Cambridge is one of the oldest breweries in the world - In Binghamton: NYS Inbriate Asylum o First site in the US where alcoholism was recognized as a disease o Alcohol had previously been viewed favorably but as water became safe (no ore cholera) to drink people were becoming cognizant of consumption issues ALCOHOL - The average American drinker o 1800s: average individual consumption was 4-5 standard drinks/day o Currently: around 3-4 a week -
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