Deadly Consequences of Drinking Alcohol

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Many people associate having a great time with consuming alcohol. Just recently, my husband and I threw a little party at our home as our way of celebrating our first apartment together. However, many people were not okay with the fact that drinking was not allowed in our home. I was completely shocked. I’ve never experienced something like that before. People were verbally abusive toward us because of a rule we implemented in our house. I remember thinking, “People can’t go a few hours without alcohol to hang out? Seriously?!”

Growing up, I’ve seen first hand what alcohol is capable of. The blackouts, yelling, arguments, and disrespect was NOT fun to be around. My husband and I decided to change our family tree and discontinue the drinking trait. Trust me, we don’t miss it.

Nevertheless, the sad truth remains that alcohol use disorders affects more than 15 million people in the United States. [1] Alcohol is a legal drug and it’s extremely addictive. If you’re over 21, it’s incredibly easy to obtain and the majority of people spend their 21st birthday getting completely wasted. That’s the norm, right?

Advertising commercials make drinking look so great and fun, but 80,000-100,000 people die each year from alcohol related deaths. [1, 2]  I really don’t think drinking should be considered as a game or sport. It’s dangerous. Yet, drinking seems to be highly supported among most people. “What’s the big deal?” “Surely, you can have a drink or two. It won’t hurt.” Yeah… I’ll pass on that.

Stop Drinking Alcohol Immediately!

I’m not kidding. After reading this blog post, I pray it will have enough hard truth in it to keep you away from this liquid poison.

The over consumption of alcohol is called 'intoxication' because booze is a toxin. Too much of this poison in one sitting can kill you.Click To Tweet

Let’s look at the different parts of the body and discover how booze can negatively affect us.

brain pain picture

Brain

Exposing the brain to long term alcohol use can shrink the size of your brain! Did you know that liquor directly affects the way the brain functions? The reason why drunk people stumble is because the brain cannot correctly communicate with the rest of the body. How scary is that? Also, the reason why people wake up unable to remember what happened the night before (blackout) is because the brain cannot store memories properly. I don’t want anything in my body that can do that!

Because of damage the frontal lobes take from alcohol consumption, the consumer may struggle in areas such as short term memory, judgement, and emotion control. Brain damage caused my drinking may alter a person’s ability to learn as well.

Mouth and Throat

Have you ever drank so much one night that your throat was left raspy the next morning? The reason why this happens is because the mouth and throat are filled with a bunch of sensitive nerve endings. Alcohol is so strong in nature that it can literally burn up those nerves. Over an extended period of exposing them to this kind of substance can lead to cancer of the mouth, throat, or esophagus. (No wonder some heavy drinkers have a deep voice!)

The Heart

Chronic alcohol abusers destroy the original appearance of their heart. They develop a heart that looks old, droopy, and stretched out. This is called cardiomyopathy and results from heavy exposure to alcohol. It weakens the heart muscle and leaves it unable to fully pump out blood to the rest of the body. Over time, regular drinkers may experience high blood pressure, irregular heart beats (arrhythmia), stroke, heart disease, and ultimately heart failure. No thanks!

Picture of someone drunk at bar

Liver

Livers are extremely important organs and should be treated with the utmost care. Unfortunately, they get hit hard from chronic alcohol use. People can drink multiple alcoholic drinks in a hour. However, it takes about an hour for the liver to oxidize one drink. The poor organ struggles the entire night someone chooses to drink. Let’s look at the various sufferings of a drinker’s liver.

Inflammation

Once the liver’s spent enough time inflamed, it tries to heal itself by forming scar tissue. Fibrosis is the first stage of scarring. Ultimately, the entire liver will be covered in scar tissue and this is called cirrhosis.

Cirrhosis

The liver tries to heal itself by covering itself in tough, hard scar tissue. However, this leaves it unable to perform correctly. The scar cells cannot operate the same as healthy cells. Once cirrhosis kicks in, a person will doom themselves to liver failure if they do not stop drinking. This condition is fatal and can end someone’s life.

Steatosis

Steatosis (AKA fatty liver disease) occurs because alcohol interferes with the liver’s productivity. It leaves it unable to break down fats which result in the fats being left inside the liver. This means over time, more and more fat will accumulate in the liver. Just like anything else, the liver cannot perform correctly when it’s clogged and lead to more and more inflammation. 80-100% of chronic drinkers have a fatty liver. [5]

Liver Disease

Right now, there are 2 million people suffering from liver disease in the US because of alcohol use. [3]

Liver Failure

As liver damage increases, it struggles removing toxins from the body. This can lead to waste build up. For obvious reasons, those who drink frequently have a higher risk of liver cancer.


 

Pancreas

The pancreas is responsible for producing insulin and other chemicals to assist your intestines digest food properly. However, booze causes chemicals and toxins to remain within the pancreas resulting in inflammation. Only a few years of alcohol abuse leaves the pancreas unable to create the amount of insulin you need and will put you at risk for developing diabetes. Those who already have diabetes should avoid alcohol at all cost (or at least watch their intake levels).

Drinkers are at a higher risk of developing pancreas cancer as well. Eventually, the blood vessel surrounding the pancreas become swollen leading to pancreatitis. This condition prevents proper digestion and the rest of the body suffers from it.

Stomach

Fatal and painful stomach ulcers are not uncommon for chronic alcohol drinkers. Also, drinking raises the amount of stomach juices. This causes people to feel full and eat less. Alcohol users can end up malnourished by not receiving the amount of nutrients they need. (This can put the consumer at risk for anemia.)

Have you’ve ever heard someone tell you to eat before you drink? Most people know that it causes you to become more drunk when you’re stomach is empty. The actual reason this occurs is because alcohol absorbs directly into the bloodstream when there’s nothing in the stomach.

Booze makes you pee more often which indicates it’s a diuretic. Unfortunately, this results in thirst and dehydration. (That next morning cotton mouth is no joke!)

Pouring beer into a cup picture

Intestines

There’s another reason why long term alcohol abusers are at risk for ending up malnourished. Since the tissues in the digestive tract are susceptible to damage, vitamins and nutrients may not be fully absorbed by the body. Additionally, drinkers can experience bloating, diarrhea, constipation, gassiness, and bloating.

Liquor can also cause adenomas to form in the colon. They’re benign tissues, but can grow into cancer if not properly monitored.

Bones

Remember I mentioned the body not being able to properly receive the vitamins it needs? Because of this, it puts the body at risk for osteoporosis (thinning bones). People who do drink frequently are more likely to experience bone fractures. Plus, they’ll take longer to heal since the body is lacking everything it needs to function.

Another extremely horrible downside to diuretics are that they flush out calcium. Your bones are left with almost none of the vitamins they need to be healthy. Also, chronic alcohol use leads to osteonecrosis, an extremely painful condition when bone tissue dies off.

Immune System

After a ‘good night out’, your immune system drops for as long as 24 hours! It’s no coincidence that you woke up with a hangover and a cold. Since alcohol lowers your immune system, it’s common for drunkards to end up contracting diseases such as pneumonia or tuberculosis. Actually, about 10% of all tuberculosis cases throughout the world can be linked to drinking alcohol.

Sexual Shortcomings

People speculate that liquor can enhance their sexual experience, but in reality the opposite is true. Men who drink are more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction, smaller testicles, breast growth, and a low sperm count. Since booze releases endorphins, the user can suffer from depression, fatigue, and low testosterone.

Alcohol can prevent the production of the sex hormone and lower sex drive. Also, women who participate in heavy drinking are exposed to the risk of becoming infertile. Plus, drinking during pregnancy can pose an array of complications.

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Central Nervous System

As if brain damage wasn’t enough, this poison can damage your central nervous system, too! It can destroy the cells in this area and leave the body with a condition known as neuropathy. Neuropathy produces various sensations of numbness, pain, burning, and weakness in the feet and hands.

Drinking causes the body to release am excess of two neurotransmitters: GABA and dopamine. While GABA is responsible for calming the brain down, dopamine produces pleasure. However, too much of these together can cause:

  • increased heart rate;
  • shortness of breath;
  • an increase of depression and aggression;
  • spasms;
  • delusions.

And More

In ancient times, alcohol was used as a weapon. If you got your opponent drunk enough, he'll make a fool of himself all on his own!Click To Tweet

In addition to all that’s listed above, there’s more consequences to abusing alcohol. It puts women at a high risk of developing breast cancer. As a matter of fact, only three drinks a week raises a woman’s chances up 15%. [4]

Those who suffer from heartburn already may want to skip out on the martinis. Liquor relaxes the muscle responsible for keeping acid out of the esophagus. This means more and more heartburn for some.

People who drink shrink their muscle mass. The alcohol gets in the way of the body’s proteins and that makes it difficult for people to remain muscular. Not only does it eat the muscle mass away, it causes the consumer to become weak. Meaning: If you’re going to work out and drink, please don’t. Just quitting alcohol will help your body so much.

Did you know? One 12-ounce can of beer contains 154 calories. That means one six pack has over 800 calories! No wonder it gives people a beer belly! Where else is it gonna store all that excess energy? As if that wasn’t bad enough, alcohol can alter metabolisms. It may cause some to really pack the pounds on quickly.

Picture of beer cans

Understanding A Hangover

Alcohol expands the blood vessels in the body resulting in a headache. When this occurs, the warmth of the blood passes right through the skin and causes the body temperature to drop. Also, the stomach is determined to get rid of the acid and toxins that liquor produces. That’s why people become nauseous and may even throw up. Since their body was so preoccupied with processing alcohol, it had no time to make the necessary sugar they need. Because of this, the person may feel weak and shaky.

Hangovers are not fun. Most people yell out, “I’m never drinking again!” Nevertheless, they go right back to drinking to have a ‘good time’. I had a friend who would constantly end up in the hospital because he would drink so much. Would you believe he still drinks? It’s a little scary to think about. My husband and I have another great friend who drinks a lot. Sometimes, he gets so drunk that he’ll sleep outside in the woods. To me, it’s just not worth it. But now I have to ask you…

Is It Really Worth It?

Regardless of the opinions of others, the numbers do not lie. Six people die every day from alcohol poisoning. More than 30% of all driving fatalities every year is because of alcohol impairment. 4,700 teens die each year due to alcohol use. [1]

Drinking is NOT a joke or a game. People love to indulge in these kind of things until it hits home. No one is immune to alcohol related injuries. How many poor families suffer from the loss of a loved one who died during a car accident that wasn’t their fault? How many children are abused by angry alcohol addicts? The answer is: too many. But you can change your family tree. You are not obligated to allow this substance in your home. Don’t just be healthy, be health to others.

#IAMHEALTH!

References:

  1. https://talbottcampus.com/alcoholism-statistics/
  2. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/addiction/understanding-alcohol-abuse-basics#1
  3. https://www.alcoholrehabguide.org/alcohol/effects/
  4. https://www.breastcancer.org/risk/factors/alcohol
  5. https://liverfoundation.org/liver-disease-statistics/#alcohol-related-liver-disease-and-cirrhosis

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2 thoughts on “Deadly Consequences of Drinking Alcohol

    1. Of course any substance here and there won’t do damage. It just sucks that so many people get swallowed up by such a horrible addiction. A lot of the alcoholics I know try to convince me that drinking alcohol every day doesn’t do damage to the human body… riiiight lol

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