Alcohol affects nearly every major organ in the human body, including the heart, the brain, the liver, pancreas, and kidneys. A team of researchers from Loyola University has found that binge drinking may be the reason it’s hard to catch your breath and can also make it harder for the lungs to breathe.
A recent new study has revealed that excessive alcohol consumption affects the balance of nitric oxide levels in the lungs. Nitric oxide is a naturally produced gas that helps fight bacterial infections in the lungs. The Study revealed that the more a participant reported drinking, the lower their levels, which then showed that their bodies were less equipped to kill bacteria and fight off lung infections. Excessive alcohol drinkers were considered women who consumed more than one drink a day on average and men who had more than two drinks a day. This criteria alone, of what excessive drinking is, is going to shock people as many Australians and Americans drink way more that this daily.
The study’s lead author Dr. Majid Afshar, a pulmonologist at Loyola University’s School of Medicine commented that “Alcohol appears to disrupt the healthy balance in the Lung and Lung doctors may need to take this into consideration.”
One out of every four Australian and Americans drinks to excess and this leads to a frightening statistic of six alcohol poisoning deaths every day. Researchers will continue working to unravel the complex relationship between alcohol consumption and the human body.
The safe alcohol limits are defined as 4 standard drinks per week for a female and for men it is 2 standard drinks in one sitting, with at least 2 alcohol free days per week.
Next time you are struggling for breath, just remember it might be the amount of alcohol you are drinking. It may also mean you need to drop the drink and get fit and healthy too. Let’s not forget that many alcohols contain preservatives and sulphytes that may also cause breath problems too. Like I always say, a little bit of alcohol (mainly red wine) is good for the body, but a lot of it is going to cause problems with your health.