Alcohol has many effects on the body when it is consumed. Most people realize the effects that it has on their mental capacity, but most do not consider the long term consequences it has overall. Excessive and continual drinking can age the body more rapidly than excessive tanning, poor nutrition and lack of exercise. Over time it can wreak havoc physically and increase the probability that you may cause harm to yourself and others via DUI related incidents.
1. Liver Toxicity
The liver is one of the most important organs in the body. It cleanses the system of toxins and it helps push clean blood throughout. Alcohol paralyzes the liver while intoxicated, leaving all of these toxins to build in your system. After the effects are gone, however, the liver is slow in removing these toxins, allowing them to increase and age the body. According to Katz & Phillips, P.A., “When you drink alcohol, your body does not metabolize it the same way it does food. It lingers in your system for a while.” This can lead to problems with all organs, including your liver and heart.
2. Premature Aging
When you drink, the body responds by placing the kidneys into overdrive. When your kidneys are working this hard, they absorb all available Vitamin A from your system so that they can work at peak performance. Vitamin A is what keeps your skin healthy and elastic from within. Lack of this vitamin will cause your skin to dry from the inside out, giving your appearance a “leathery” look, regardless of how much moisturizer you use. Additionally, since your kidneys are working tirelessly it will absorb and store any liquid you consume. Most often this is in the face, hands and feet. As your skin expands from the bloating, it stretches permanently. The reduced amount of Vitamin A has decreased the elasticity, causing wrinkles when the bloating disappears. If your organs are aging quickly, your body will follow.
3. Cognitive Disruption
Alcohol can disrupt the firing and wiring of the central nervous system. Along with bouts of dizziness and fatigue, it can also cause slurred speech, uncharacteristic behavior, cloudy judgment and unbalanced coordination. Prolonged use can eventually produce forgetfulness, loss of consciousness and even brain damage. The negative effects can be very intense. In addition, studies have shown that people who consume it on a regular basis do not have proper sleep patterns. Since we need sleep to help regenerate and heal from the trials of the day, lack of sleep is very dangerous for cognitive functions and will cause your mental capacity to be compromised.
4. Legal Troubles
That one drink could possibly land you in a heap of trouble. Since drinking affects mental faculties, most may feel they are capable of driving even after consuming just a few cocktails. However, this misconception can lead to significant damage resulting in DUI related incidents. Either to your vehicle, your criminal record or someone’s life, the risk is too high to consider getting behind the wheel inebriated. Court costs are expensive and to secure a well qualified lawyer can be costly. Studies have shown by some approximations, a DUI can be well over $20,000.
As with everything in life, each action that is taken has an effect. If you drink excessively, you will find that you are aging faster, prone to serious physical ailments and in danger of your life behind the wheel. Responsibility and moderation is imperative when you consider the consequences of the ugly truth about alcohol.
Ieda Vincent is a health and wellness advocate and teaches several science classes. Katz & Phillips, P.A. has the experience to prevent the loss of your driver’s license. Their presence at a DHSMV hearing can make the difference between conviction time or continuing to drive.