Alcohol is legal, socially accepted, and readily available – so there is a misconception that it is less dangerous than other addictive substances which are illegal. But really, alcohol can be just as damaging to us; especially if it is consumed in high volumes over a long period of time.
Studies have found that heavy alcohol consumption plays a huge part in at least 60 different medical conditions. Its use over time can cause serious issues for our health, but even just one session of binge drinking can have a damaging impact.
If you think that you are addicted to alcohol, then it’s best to speak to your doctor & consider alcohol rehab. The faster you act, the less the chance is that you will develop serious health issues.
These are 10 of the most common and serious effects that alcohol can have on our health and bodies:
An obvious one to start – everyone knows that alcohol gets you drunk, but its harmful effects are usually laughed off. Nausea and sickness come with intoxication, but so do poor decision making and coordination; which can get you into bad situations.
Liver disease is one of the most common effects of prolonged alcohol abuse. The liver deals with processing alcohol, so drinking a lot can put a strain on this organ. ‘Alcoholic fatty liver’ is an early, reversible sign of alcohol abuse damage. If the abuse continues it can cause cirrhosis.
Pancreatitis can cause your pancreas to become inflamed leading to a lot of pain and sickness, fever, and an upset stomach.
Chronic consumption of alcohol has been known to cause some types of cancer including cancer of the; mouth, larynx, stomach, oesophagus, liver, colon, breast, and rectum.
Alcohol can suppress your central nervous system, and long term excessive drinking can actually lead to brain damage. It can affect receptors and neurotransmitters in the brain.
Alcohol can cause many different types of gastrointestinal and digestive issues. This could be stomach ulcers, acid reflux, heartburn, and gastritis.
Immune System Suppression
Drinking a lot of alcohol can actually suppress your immune system. It does this by causing changes to you platelets and white and red blood cells – all which work to fight away any infections.
Not many people associate osteoporosis with alcohol consumption, however, alcohol can interfere with vitamin D, calcium and cortisol production. These are all important for good bone health.
Weight and Nutrition Issues
Alcoholic drinks contain what people call ‘empty calories’. They make you consume a lot of extra calories without feeling full and have no nutritional value. A lot of people also overeat when they are intoxicated.
Chronic alcohol consumption can make blood vessels constrict, leading to hormone release and high blood pressure. It can also cause angina and strokes.