Alcohol and Heart Health
Have you ever heard that alcohol can be beneficial for your heart health? Indeed, there are studies that state that consuming small or moderate amounts of alcohol can be beneficial for heart health, especially red wine. So is this true? To find out, let’s learn together what the effects of drinking alcohol have on our bodies according to ajsmuskego.
The following are the effects of drinking excessive alcohol on the body:
· Increases levels of body fat called triglycerides which can contribute to the accumulation of fat in blood vessels indirectly by increasing levels of Triglyceride Rich Lipoprotein in the blood.
· Increases blood pressure through several mechanisms, one of which is by increasing the activity of the Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosterone system which causes blood vessels to narrow and fluid to be retained in the body.
· Damages the heart muscle due to the toxic effects of ethanol and its metabolic products. This disorder is called Cardiomyopathy and can cause heart failure in the long term.
· Causes obesity and increases the risk of obesity-related diseases such as diabetes because alcohol can be a source of additional calories outside the food we consume. One glass of beer or wine can contain around 100-150 calories!
So what are the benefits of drinking moderate amounts of alcohol on heart health?
· There is evidence that drinking moderate amounts of alcohol can slightly increase levels of a good fat in the body called HDL, which can transport fats in the blood and deliver these fats to the liver so they don’t accumulate in the blood vessels.
· Researchers also found that red wine specifically contains antioxidants which can protect against the risk of heart disease by inhibiting the process of atherosclerosis or the accumulation of fat on the walls of blood vessels.
Before we drink alcohol after knowing its good benefits, we need to consider that we can increase HDL more effectively by exercising and we can consume antioxidants from fruits and vegetables. So do we need to drink alcohol to get health effects on our bodies?
In the end, if you have not consumed alcohol before you don’t need to start if only to get its good benefits because there are many other ways that are more effective. However, if you are a fan of alcoholic drinks, drinking in moderation is the key. How much is a moderate amount? The daily drinking limit for alcoholic drinks such as beer is 355 ml, wine is 120 ml and drinks with an alcohol content of around 40% such as vodka/gin/whiskey are 45 ml. If you want to improve your health, adopt a healthy lifestyle such as sufficient physical activity (150 minutes per week), a healthy diet and maintaining your weight.