Is your daily glass of wine or beer hijacking your healthy lifestyle?
This post is not going to be popular and I will get a lot of pushback from some of you. But you cannot shake me…if you are a daily wine, beer or alcohol drinker you need to read this! So unpopular or not we are going to break it down to just 5 reasons you should not be drinking alcohol every day! Honestly I could tell you about 50 reasons but no one will read all that.
I am not saying that you should never ever drink an adult beverage. This has nothing to religion, alcoholism, personal convictions, or even personal troubles surrounding drinking. It stems from learning how the body works and what needs to be done for optimum health. It comes from never wanting to have cancer again and reading everything I can get my hands and eyes on. It is from being mentored by some of the biggest thought leaders in the wellness industry. I want you to have a light bulb moment in your health and I am willing to be unpopular to help that happen.
5 Things You Should Know Before You Take Another Drink of Alcohol
You might be asking, does ALCOHOL include beer and wine? Yes! Does just one drink a day count? Keep reading and you tell me!
1. Crawling Metabolism
Let’s do some math. Alcohol is measured in units. The average glass of wine has about 4 units of alcohol and a beer has about 3 units. The average healthy male can metabolize 1 unit of alcohol every hour. There are other factors that could shorten or lengthen this process. Those are age, gender, overall health, activity while drinking and food consumption while drinking. Alcohol is expelled in 3 ways; breath, sweat and urine. It circulates throughout the whole body in every organ. Essentially anywhere there is blood there is alcohol when you drink. Part of that journey is through the liver. Your livers main function is to metabolize fats and clean toxins. When you drink alcohol it goes into emergency mode because a toxin has been introduced into the body. It stops all other functions like repair and fat metabolization. If you are doing this on a daily basis you are stopping all other liver functions for no less than 3 hours a day! So if you are wondering why you can’t lose those last few pounds or why that muffin top won’t go away, it may be time to look at your daily alcohol habits. Check out this video by Marc Dressen to hear more about how alcohol is processed in the body and how it is affecting your metabolism.
2. Give Your Liver A Break
Your liver is really super amazing. It actually can rejuvenate itself and heal damage. When you drink alcohol you put your liver into emergency mode. Your body recognizes it as a toxin and forces your liver to start working overtime to clean that toxin out. If you have two glasses of wine, that is 8 units of alcohol, which means about 8 hours (for the average male, longer for others) of hard labor for your liver to endure. If you are doing that everyday you can see how the wear and tear adds up pretty quickly!
3. Increases Your Risk Cancer
When I was diagnosed with breast cancer there was one moment that stood out to me. After it was confirmed for sure that I had breast cancer every doctor in my team asked me 4 questions. The one that always shocked me was, “how often do you drink alcohol?” Now I don’t know about you but when a medical doctor asks that because they are looking for reasons why my body produced cancer the alarm should sound! The Komen Foundation says this “A pooled analysis of data from 53 studies found for each alcoholic drink consumed per day, the relative risk of breast cancer increased by about 7%. Women who had two to three alcoholic drinks per day had a 20% higher risk of breast cancer.” Still thinking that those few glasses of wine are good for you and doing no harm to your body? You might think 20% does not sound to high…that means out of the 5 daily wine drinkers you know 1 of them will get breast cancer. It’s all good until you are that 1 out of the five!
4. Mood Killer
Raise your hand if you get to the end of a busy, bad or sad day and make a proclamation “I need a drink!” You have earned it, right? Really what you are paying yourself back with is a depressant. It is helping you physically feel relax but your mind and body is doing anything but. When you drink 1 glass of wine you depress the central nervous system for up to 4 hours. You are causing unnecessary stress in the body by releasing a toxin into it. Plus it is robbing your body of the ability to absorb B vitamins, which contribute to your overall mental health and help you maintain even stress levels. The Royal College of Psychiatrists says this about the connection between alcohol and depression “Alcohol affects the chemistry of the brain, increasing the risk of depression. Hangovers can create a cycle of waking up feeling ill, anxious, jittery and guilty. Life gets depressing, arguments with family or friends, trouble at work, memory and sexual problems can occur.” If you are trying to escape stress and just relax, a drink or two will not work. This causes you to “escape” from the reality of the thing that is causing the stress in your life and not deal with the root issues that are causing the need to “unwind”. Oh, and when it comes to “being in the mood” you can forget that too. Alcohol does nothing for that “mood” either. It will lower inhibitions but excessive alcohol drinking can lead to sexual dysfunction and infertility.
5. Inhibits Nutrient Absorption
So you already know that it zaps vitamin B absorption but did you know that drinking alcohol irritates the small intestine and causes interference with the absorption of vital nutrients? Also alcohol is a diuretic so all water soluble minerals, zinc, magnesium and potassium can be affected. (Source University of Michigan) If you are spending all this time and effort trying to heal a leaky gut and you are drinking alcohol everyday, guess what…you are spinning your wheels and possibly harming your gut even more.
So, Is Daily Drinking of Alcohol Hijacking Your Healthy Lifestyle?
I think if you took the time to read the above information you would emphatically say YES! I can’t see spending all the time and effort eating real food only to sideswipe it by introducing a toxin into your body.
In January of 2016, Britain’s Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies announced a sharp decrease of recommended units of alcohol per week for Britains. “If you take 1,000 women, 110 will get breast cancer without drinking. Drink up to these guidelines and an extra 20 women will get cancer because of that drinking. Double the guideline limit and an extra 50 women per 1,000 will get cancer. Take bowel cancer in men: if they drink within the guidelines their risk is the same as non-drinking. But if they drink up to the old guidelines an extra 20 men per 1,000 will get bowel cancer. That’s not scaremongering, that’s fact and it’s hard science.” Britain is leading the way in the thought processes and I believe others will fall in behind them. This was not met with popularity, in fact major news sources tried to debunk the new science with 30-year-old research.
Really it’s all very simple. You make great efforts to detoxify your body, then you are willing to introduce a toxin into it when you drink alcohol. Even one pint, glass, can, or bottle does not change the fact that alcohol is a toxin. The next time you need to unwind after a long day take a walk, grab a good book, play with your kids, kiss your spouse, or make a delicious meal. You work hard to keep your body clean and toxin free, why not take this next step in your path to good health.
Other amazing sources: Health Line – THE EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL ON THE BODY
Need some great alcohol drink alternatives? Check out our Mocktail, Beer and Wine replacements here!