Have a nice drink?That’s how alcohol ages you

2022-04-30 0 By

Wine has always played an integral role on the holiday table.But, spoilsport though, the World Heart Federation says any alcohol consumption is bad for your health, whether it’s for fun or fun.The effects of alcohol on health become more pronounced with age, new research has found.Long-term binge drinking can cause damage to the liver and brain and leave telltale signs on the skin.Even light and moderate drinkers face the emotional consequences and greater health risks of alcohol as they age.Today, US News and World Report summarizes how alcohol affects the body and causes it to age.Alcohol tolerance diminishes Tolerance to alcohol decreases over time due to changes in body composition.Hormonal changes with age, such as a decrease in some metabolism-related hormones, increase sensitivity to alcohol.For older people, the ratio of fat to muscle increased even as their weight remained stable.So even if you drink the same amount of alcohol as before, your blood alcohol level will be higher because fat absorbs less alcohol from the blood than muscle.Reaction times and motor capacity also slow down with age, and drinking alcohol further reduces these abilities.There’s no denying that drinking alcohol can reduce some negative emotions in the short term.In the long term, however, anxiety increased among drinkers, especially habitual drinkers.The University of Michigan survey found that older people who drank to cope with negative emotions such as anxiety during the coronavirus pandemic were more likely to report an increase in their alcohol consumption.Using alcohol as a coping mechanism is counterproductive.In addition, when older people lose a loved one, they often experience deep grief, and it is tempting for them to turn to alcohol to cope with the grief.Depression is already common among older people, and it can be exacerbated by alcohol consumption.Drinking can lead to poor judgment, and there are plenty of examples of how alcohol can get in the way.The effect of alcohol on decision-making ability increases with age, leading drinkers to take risks such as drink driving or making unrealistic investment decisions.Drinking alcohol speeds up the skin aging process.Alcohol dehydrates your body, including your skin.Dehydration and inflamed tissue both have an impact on skin health.Wrinkles, puffiness, dryness, flushed cheeks and purple capillaries…Drinking too much can age one’s face.Jaundice (when the skin and whites of the eyes turn yellow) can also be a sign of alcoholic liver disease.Heavy drinking is a risk factor for liver diseases such as cirrhosis and liver cancer.Even moderate alcohol consumption can affect liver function.The aging liver can’t break down or metabolize alcohol as quickly, which causes it to stay in the system longer.Chronic diseases that develop with age can be complicated by alcohol consumption.The American Diabetes Association says dangerously low blood sugar levels that can occur within 24 hours of drinking alcohol can interfere with diabetics’ efforts to eat healthy.Drinking alcohol can raise blood pressure in the short term, while repeated heavy drinking can lead to high blood pressure.Heavy drinking also increases the risk of ulcers and prevents existing ones from healing.Older adults may take multiple medications, so it’s important to understand how alcohol interferes with prescription and over-the-counter medications.Mixing alcohol with drugs either reduces or enhances the intended effects of the drug.In addition, some drugs already contain alcohol.Liver function declines with age, reducing the body’s ability to break down and remove drugs.Alcohol consumption can also affect the liver, increasing the risk of side effects from medications.Alcohol interacts with medications older people take in a number of ways.Drugs for blood pressure, depression and pain have sedative effects on their own, and when combined with alcohol, they create a synergistic or multiplier effect.This increased sedation makes older people more tired, increasing their risk of falling and driving in an accident.Reduced brain volume and a history of heavy drinking increase the risk of dementia.Long-term heavy drinking accelerates brain shrinkage, and loss of brain volume is a key factor in memory and cognitive decline, especially in older adults.Alcoholic dementia, which occurs after years of heavy drinking, causes confusion, anxiety and lack of muscle coordination.Some people think that moderate alcohol consumption can help you sleep better, but the opposite is true.Many older adults’ lifestyle habits (such as frequent daytime naps, less exercise, and less time outdoors) can interfere with sleep cycles.Drinking alcohol can exacerbate insomnia in older adults by preventing them from falling asleep or staying asleep.Alcohol is a diuretic, which is why it causes you to urinate more.Therefore, you need to drink more water to replace lost fluids.The problem is that the body’s ability to sense thirst and retain water decreases over the years, making it more vulnerable to dehydration.As you age, your body’s ability to respond to changes in the weather diminishes.Signs of dehydration in older adults include confusion, incoherent speech, constipation and falls.Increased risk of falls Drunkenness increases the risk of accidents, including falls, fractures and car crashes.As you get older, balance and stability pose greater challenges.Older people are more likely to have alcohol-related falls, more serious injuries, such as hip fractures, and longer recovery times.Alcohol also slows brain activity, with alertness, coordination and judgment all decreasing with increased drinking.The more alcohol you drink, the more likely you are to become dependent.In the long run, this can lead to more anxiety, depression and stress due to various brain changes.As alcohol dependence increases, people become extremely anxious when drinking.They drink so much that they lose control of their anxiety.When you don’t drink, you’re in a state of overstimulation, which is characterized by stress and increased sweating.Withdrawal Effects Chronic drinkers who suddenly stop drinking can experience withdrawal effects (similar to drug addiction episodes), which can manifest as euphoria, insomnia, and even seizures.The risk of withdrawal increases with age.A cause-and-effect relationship between alcohol consumption and heart health has not been established, although some studies have suggested that a chemical in red wine (resveratrol) may have a protective effect on the heart, the American Heart Association website notes.Heavy drinking increases the risk of arrhythmias and high blood pressure.If you don’t drink, it’s not worth starting just for the potential and unproven benefits.Alcohol consumption is increasingly linked to certain types of cancer — including cancers of the mouth, larynx, esophagus, liver, colon and breast — and accounts for 4 percent of all cancer deaths, according to the American Cancer Society.To reduce the risk of cancer, it is best not to drink alcohol.Dominate your social life After retirement, you have more time for socializing, which often involves drinking.Outdoor activities, hobbies, book clubs and other interests are better options, and alcohol is a big expense.Switch to non-alcoholic beverages to save money and feel better.(Beijing Youth Daily/Yu Xia)