In honor of St. Patrick’s Day – which began innocently enough as a holiday for Ireland’s patron saint in the 1600s, but has since devolved into… you know – we’re here to discuss the many dangers of drinking. Before you go looking in the attic for the green beer helmet and head out to the parade for some Irish-themed indulgence, let’s go over some sobering facts about the toll excessive amounts of alcohol can have on the human body.
Booze Wrecks the Liver
The human liver is a fascinating, magnificent organ. It detoxifies the blood and helps to distribute and store vital nutrients. Your liver processes everything you eat … and drink. Unfortunately, alcohol is toxic to liver cells and can cause a host of deadly conditions including cirrhosis – where the liver is scarred so badly it can no longer function.
Eating healthier foods, exercising more, and especially – taking it easy on the booze – are the keys to keeping your liver healthy and functioning properly.
It Can Cause Cancer
Another wake-up call as to the dangers of drinking too much is the very real possibility of cancer. Drinking increases your risk for developing a host of different cancers, including cancer of the mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, breast, head, and neck.
As we’ve discussed before, preparing for the many costs of cancer is no joke.
It Can Damage Your Heart and Brain
Just one night of overindulgence can cause significant damage to your body, including your heart and brain. Drinking too much alcohol can cause an arrhythmia, cardiomyopathy – a condition that can leave you struggling catch a single full breath – and other deadly heart conditions.
As for your brain, booze can fundamentally change the way it works. In addition to altering your brain chemistry and causing temporary impairment (and the accompanying poor life choices that so often ensue), science shows that alcohol abuse can cause long-term brain damage. It can even shrink your brain and cause dementia.
It’ll Send Your Blood Pressure Sky High
Alcohol can disturb your finely tuned nervous system and cause your blood pressure to spike. If you drink to excess often, this can become a long-term issue and result in unwelcome consequences like kidney disease, heart ailments, and stroke.
Please, Don’t Discount the Dangers of Drinking
It’s truly incredible to think about how many detrimental effects consuming alcohol can have, and the wide range of problems posed by the dangers of drinking. For something so socially acceptable and easily procured, it sure can wreak havoc on the human body.
We discussed above some of the more frightening consequences of excessive booze, but there are many more serious health issues it can cause. Seizures, nerve damage, diarrhea and other digestive problems, pancreatitis, depression, immune system suppression, decreased vision, anemia, gout… the list is seemingly endless. And this is to say nothing of the life-altering foolishness that drinking tends to cause. Or HANGOVERS.
So, this St. Patrick’s Day, may the road rise up to meet you, may the wind be always at your back… and may you enjoy yourself in a responsible, healthy manner for years to come. Your body will thank you!
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