We've all heard that a glass of red wine is good for heart health, but what about the negative effects of alcohol? Alcohol is a legal drug for those over the age of 21 in the United States, however, just because it's legal to consume alcohol, does not mean it's good for you. Alcohol has many negative side effects on the human body, can lead to deteriorating health, addiction, and in some cases, even death.
One of the most common side effects of alcohol is liver damage. Your liver breaks down the alcohol you drink and is therefore directly affected by it. Alcohol causes the liver to absorb fatty and thick tissue build up, causing limited blood flow. Because of this, the cells in your liver can die off and result in liver damage, liver failure, and cirrhosis.
Alcohol affects the brain by slowing down your cognitive functioning. This means that your reflexes are slower, your speech can be slurred, your balance can be thrown off, your depth perception is off, your inhibitions are lowered and you can even experience memory loss. Alcohol can have long-term effects on your brain as well. Consuming alcohol over a long period of time can cause your brain to shrink, affecting your ability to learn new things, think clearly, and remember things.
Consuming alcohol can also cause stomach problems. Stomach acid can build up and cause nausea and stomach ulcers. Drinkers may also experience diarrhea, heartburn, nutritional deficiency, swelling, bloating and pancreatitis.
Alcohol can weaken the immune system, can cause a change in sleep patterns, can cause behavioral changes, can cause muscle cramps, can cause hangovers and dehydration, can mess with your hormones and much more. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, women should not drink more than 3 drinks on any day or more than 7 drinks per week, and men should not drink more than more than 4 drinks on any day or more than 14 drinks per week, or else it is considered "at risk" or "heavy" drinking. Basically, consuming too much alcohol too often is too risky.
At Physicians Age Management Centers, your health is our number one priority. It's what we do every day and our specialty. We can help you get on the right path toward a healthier life. Call today for a free consultation at 844.440.8444.