Drinking alcohol is not fun when you’ve to go to an emergency room! There are different serious long-term effects of alcohol on your body that every booze-lover should know.
Effects of alcohol: Had a little too much to drink last night? If you did then you might be having the worst hangover. But, hangover aside, you are thinking there are no effects whatsoever, but YOU’RE WRONG!
While drinking in moderate levels has no such harm, heavy or excessive drinking for long-term has many side effects on your health. Experts suggest that for sound health, women should drink one drink and men should drink two drinks per day. However, if you’re drinking way more than that, then you are probably risking your overall health. A study published in The Lancet confirmed that drinking alcohol, regardless of the amount, eventually led to poorer health. To add more, drinking alcohol was regarded as the topmost cause and risk factor for the early deaths of people of ages 15 to 49, with a record of 2.8 million deaths across the globe in 2016.
If you’re suffering from alcoholism, read our article on Alcoholism: Causes, Complication, Presenting Features, Management & Prevention
So what could be the possible side effects of sipping liquor or beer on your health? It’s time to find out.
One of the least difficult approaches to hold your weight in line is avoiding excessive drinking. Studies demonstrate that excessive alcohol intake can be a hazard factor for obesity particularly when you drink it on a regular basis. It’s because alcohol is a good source of extra calories. How? Well, when we drink, we tend to eat more than usual which ultimately increases your appetite in the long term, and you know what happens when you have a big appetite- you get fat!
2.Risk of Dementia
The feeling of dizziness, loss of control over your movements, slurry speech, impaired memory are some of the effects of alcohol on the brain. Excessive alcohol consumption over years and years can eventually lead to alcoholic dementia (aka alcohol-induced major neurocognitive disorder). It will roughly take just a minute for the first molecules of alcohol to reach your brain and induce the effects. A major French research that studied more than 1 million adults, found that, among the 57,000 cases of early onset dementia, nearly 60% were related to chronic heavy drinking.
Have you ever thought that every shot of tequila you’re taking with much pride affects your liver? The bitter truth is alcohol and liver just don’t go along. Do you want to know how alcohol affects the liver? Well, when alcohol reaches the liver, alcohol breaks down into a toxic component, acetaldehyde that ultimately damages the liver cells. Acetaldehyde can even cause permanent scarring of the liver. It dehydrates your liver, resulting in fatty liver. Therefore, regular and heavy drinking over time can strain your liver, leading to alcoholic liver diseases.
You might also want to read 5 Ways How Dehydration Affects Your Brain
Effects of alcohol not only affects your liver or your brain, but it also affects your blood vessels. Once you drink, the alcohol triggers the release of stress hormones that cause it to tighten and constrict. This causes your pressure to drastically increase on a temporary basis. But the repeated binge drinking can cause chronic hypertension, resulting in other severe health problems. According to Arthur Klatsky, MD and Investigator for Kaiser Permanente’s research division, states,
“Adults above the age of 50 are at much higher risk of heart attack and stroke than they are of any possible harmful effects to light-moderate drinking. So even if they have high blood pressure, they could see the health benefit from something like a glass of red wine a day”
But, drinking adds an extra risk in developing hypertension soon in the later ages. So, it’s better to cut down drinking to moderate levels when you have time.
You always start with one beer and then two and three; the next thing you know you’re drinking the entire thing off the bar! One of the major long-term effects of alcohol consumption is the physical and emotional dependency on alcohol. Alcohol addiction or alcoholism is a serious problem and you need to seek a professional help to break the addiction. Getting addicted is quite easy but withdrawing from alcohol can result in serious problems such as anxiety, nausea, high blood pressure, heavy sweating, seizure, hallucinations, cardiac arrhythmia and so on.
A study showed that those who binge drink are at nearly 40% higher stroke risk compared to those who never binge drink. Heavy drinking ultimately increases your blood pressure and those who have high blood pressure are already at the risk of suffering from stroke and heart attack. Sometimes there are no such warning signs and symptoms of stroke, but researchers have shown that high blood pressure is one such risk factor for stroke.
Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas that can lead to serious complications such as diabetes and pancreatic cancer. Excessive alcohol consumption isn’t the only culprit (gallstones and certain genetic disorders can also cause it), but it’ll up your risk big time. That’s because booze interferes with normal pancreas function, causing the organ to secrete digestive enzymes internally instead of sending them out to the small intestine, where they’re supposed to go.