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What Alcohol Does To The Body – Part 3 of 3

excessive alcohol

In this final article of a 3-part series we will look at how excessive alcohol affects vital body organs. Your sleep, bathroom visits and what the reasons are for those hangovers from hell.

Excessive alcohol & the pancreas:

The pancreas plays a vital role in producing insulin and other chemicals. These help your intestines break down food. The problem with excessive alcohol is that it clogs the natural process and means chemicals and toxins from alcohol remain inside the pancreas. This causes inflammation of a vital body organ that can lead to serious health issues.

Years of heavy drinking also affect a person’s ability to produce sufficient amounts of insulin. The body requires insulin to function normally and this shortfall can lead to diabetes. It also increases the chances of a person suffering from cancer of the pancreas.

Excessive alcohol & the liver:

The liver has the unenviable task of taking the brunt of all alcohol consumed. Its job is to remove dangerous and unwanted toxins alcohol contains. When alcohol is taken in moderation this vital organ is more than capable of disposing of unwanted toxins and keeping your body functioning as it should do.

But, those who drink to excess put too much pressure on the liver and it becomes fatty due to the build-up of thick, fibrous tissue. This limits the amount of blood which gets to liver cells causing them to die off. Once this process is in motion liver scars are evident and the liver is unable to function at full capacity. The ultimate ‘reward’ of this for heavy drinkers is the disease known as cirrhosis of the liver. Cirrhosis of the liver is often fatal.

All-too regular bathroom visits:

One of the many functions the brain performs automatically is to give off a hormone that prevents your kidneys from producing too much urine. Alcohol causes mischief by telling the brain to hold off on the release of this hormone. This means a person needs to go to the bathroom far more often and as a result can easily suffer from dehydration.

Those who have been drinking heavily for years will find that alcohol places the extra workload on their vital body organs. This can also wear kidneys down causing a wide variety of kidney-related problems. Problems that are not only painful to live with but will certainly affect quality of life.

Alcohol and sleep:

Many drinkers wrongly believe that alcohol helps them achieve a better night’s sleep. While it is true that alcohol causes drowsiness and helps a person initially drop off more easily it does not allow for a good night’s sleep. This is because while you are sleeping your body continues to process the alcohol remaining in the body.

Once its effects wear off you will start tossing and turning. Excessive alcohol intake also affects the quality of much needed REM sleep required to leave you feeling refreshed and restored. Instead, heavy drinkers are more likely to suffer from bad dreams and nightmares. As well as having to make those unwanted night trips to the bathroom.

What’s a hangover?

That shabby feeling which is all too common for heavy drinkers is no accident. Alcohol dehydrates and forces blood vessels in the brain and body to expand leaving you with a headache of varying degrees. Your stomach joins in the fun because it is trying to get rid of toxins and acid that the alcohol has put there. This results in you feeling nauseous or physically vomiting.

The final negative relates to an overworked liver. Because it has been so busy processing that dangerous alcohol it has been unable to release enough sugar into the blood. This in turn causes weakness and body shakes.

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