What Drinking Alcohol Every Day Does To Your Body

What Drinking Alcohol Every Day Does To Your Body

While drinking alcohol every now and then can prove to be a good time, drinking it every day or excessively consuming it can be incredibly detrimental. There are a number of health issues that can arise from daily drinking, ones that are very serious and you should be aware of. So to help you keep an eye on your wellbeing, here are 20 things that can happen to your body that you should be aware of if you drink on the regular.

1. Liver Damage

Daily alcohol consumption can be very bad for your body, including leading to liver damage and conditions like fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, fibrosis, and cirrhosis. The liver is the part of your body that's responsible for metabolizing alcohol, so overworking it can cause inflammation and scarring.

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2. Cardiovascular Issues

While moderate alcohol intake has been studied and linked to certain heart health benefits like raising HDL (good) cholesterol levels, don't expect the same for daily drinking. Daily consumption, especially when done in large amounts, can elevate blood pressure, weaken heart muscles (cardiomyopathy), and increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. In other words, moderation is good, overdoing it is not.

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3. Digestive Problems

Have you ever had an upset stomach after drinking alcohol? Well, that's because alcohol can irritate the digestive tract, leading to problems like gastritis and ulcers. Over time, chronic drinking can even affect the absorption of vitamins and nutrients, potentially causing malnutrition.

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4. Immune System Suppression

Regularly drinking alcohol is one way you can weaken your immune system, making the body more susceptible to infections. This is due to the fact that alcohol can reduce the ability of white blood cells to effectively attack bacteria and viruses.

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5. Brain Function Impairment

Yes, drinking can affect how your brain works. Alcohol can affect the brain's communication pathways, leading to problems like impairments in cognitive functions, memory, and coordination. When done in the long term, it can result in permanent negative changes, both in the brain's structure and function.

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6. Mental Health Issues

While you might enjoy the "high" you get from getting drunk, there's actually a strong link between alcohol abuse and mental health disorders like depression and anxiety. Daily drinking will only exacerbate these conditions and worsen their development.

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7. Sleep Disruption

While you might think of alcohol as more of a sedative, it actually disrupts sleep patterns in the long run. All it'll do is affect your quality of your sleep! Chronic drinking can lead to conditions like insomnia and other sleep-related issues.

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8. Weight Gain

There is no nutritional value in alcohol as it's simply high in empty calories. As a result, daily consumption can contribute to weight gain and obesity if one isn't careful with their intake. This in turn can increase the risks of a variety of health-related issues like type 2 diabetes for instance.

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9. Increased Cancer Risk

Drinking alcohol on a regular basis has unfortunately been linked to an increased risk of several types of cancer. This includes liver, breast, esophagus, throat, and mouth cancer. If you're an incredibly heavy drinker, your risk of stomach cancer is heightened too.

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10. Dependency and Addiction

Addiction is a very serious matter and it's not surprising to learn that daily alcohol use can lead to physical dependence. This is characterized by a strong craving for alcohol, an inability to control intake, and experiencing withdrawal symptoms when trying to refrain. Dependency and addiction can have a very negative effect on one's life, affecting personal relationships, employment, and overall quality of life.

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11. Pancreatitis

This is one you definitely want to avoid - chronic alcohol consumption has been observed as one of the leading causes of pancreatitis, a painful and potentially dangerous inflammation of the pancreas. This affects its ability to aid in digestion and regulate blood sugar.

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12. Bone Density Reduction

Especially during your younger adult years, drinking excessively can have a major negative impact on your bones. Alcohol interferes with the balance of calcium in the body and hormone levels which are both critical for bone health. So if you drink on a daily basis, this can lead to decreased bone density which in turn increases the risk of osteoporosis and fractures.

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13. Nutritional Deficiencies

As briefly mentioned before, alcohol has a negative effect on the body's ability to absorb and utilize various nutrients. This can include vitamins A, B1, B12, C, D, and E, along with folate and minerals like zinc which all can lead to deficiencies and a plethora of related health issues.

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14. Sexual and Reproductive Health Issues

Chronic alcohol use can lead to sexual dysfunction and problems with menstrual cycles. It also increases the risk of infertility in both men and women by affecting hormone levels. 

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15. Skin Conditions

Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it can dehydrate the body. But not just the body, the skin too! This can lead to a number of skin conditions such as premature aging, wrinkles, and even acne! It can also exacerbate existing conditions you may have like rosacea and psoriasis.

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16. Increased Risk of Injuries

Here's one you're probably already familiar with - drinking too much alcohol impairs judgment, coordination, and reaction times. All this means is it increases the likelihood of accidents and injuries. This includes every terrible thing from falling to drowning, car accidents, and any other unintended injuries.

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17. Hypertension

It's been studied that regular heavy drinking can lead to long-term increases in blood pressure, which is also known as hypertension. This condition is a significant risk factor for heart disease and stroke, meaning you want to avoid it as much as possible.

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18. Alcoholic Neuropathy

Chronic alcohol abuse can lead to alcoholic neuropathy, a form of nerve damage that can cause immense pain, tingling, and muscle weakness in the extremities, affecting bodily functions. 

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19. Altered Fat Metabolism

Alcohol consumption affects the way the body metabolizes fats, leading to increased levels of triglycerides and cholesterol in the blood. This can contribute to the development of fatty liver disease and increase the risk of heart disease.

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20. Immune System Deregulation

Beyond simple suppression, chronic alcohol use can lead to deregulation of the immune system, making it more difficult for the body to fight off diseases and increasing the risk of serious infections like pneumonia.

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