Moderating your alcohol consumption is a key ingredient to a healthy heart. Too much of anything is not a good thing and that is certainly true with alcohol. There are a few benefits associated with drinking alcohol in moderation, including:
- Lower blood pressure
- An increased amount of “good” cholesterol
- Prevention of Type II Diabetes
Heart Health Linked To Excessive Drinking
But there are severe risks for those that cross over to heavy drinking, addiction and alcoholism. This article on balancing risks and benefits of alcohol is very appropriate for those that are on the edge of this ongoing discussion. For the purpose of this post, we want to highlight just some of the risks that affect a person’s cardiovascular health.
Drinking Alcohol Daily May Lead To Cardiomyopathy
Researchers have found people who drink alcohol every day for a prolonged period are at a greater risk of developing disorders of the heart muscle, which are collectively referred to as cardiomyopathy. There are three main types of cardiomyopathy, all of which are progressive and cause reduced effectiveness of your heart’s functionality. For example, the muscle may become too large, stiffer than it should be or the muscle walls become abnormally thick. Good blood circulation is restricted in all of these abnormalities. Alcohol abuse, too much sugar in a person’s diet, and other unhealthy lifestyle choices like smoking cigarettes are all leading causes of this very dangerous heart condition.
Excessive Alcohol Use Can Raise Blood Pressure
Even though moderate amounts of alcohol tend to have a lowering effect on blood pressure, when you drink too much, your blood pressure could become too high. If you have a family history of high blood pressure (also known as hypertension) or have been told by a doctor during a checkup that your blood pressure is higher than it should be, it is especially important to be careful about how much you drink.
After speaking with your physician, you may also want to get a home blood pressure monitoring kit to discover how high your blood pressure actually is compared with a normal range and begin monitoring your pressure. The statistics are not good for those that have untreated hypertension.
Stroke, memory loss, a heart attack, kidney failure, and aneurysms are all complications associated to hypertension. Alcoholism is rarely cited as a primary cause for these conditions when a patient arrives at a hospital because so many alcoholics lie when a doctor asks, “How much do you drink?” The good news is that there are good results for those drinkers that take action before it is too late.
Alcohol Might Cause Abnormal Heart Rhythms
A couple of years back, a study of 79,000 people over 12 years discovered that even moderate drinking plays a role in abnormal heart rhythms, reports a doctor at The Cleveland Clinic. They also realized this side effect is more common in cases of people that participate in binge drinking. Heart arrhythmias are a common side effect of patients that are admitted to our alcohol detox unit and a big reason why you should not detox from alcohol at home.
These are just some of the heart-related problems you may experience from drinking alcohol every day or otherwise indulging too much. If your doctor has already diagnosed you with a heart problem, he or she will likely ask you about the amount of alcohol you consume. The truth can set you free!