Earlier tonight, me and the boyfriend grabbed a bucket of kentucky’s fried chicken for take out (since he felt lazy cooking) and took it home to share with the family. After dinner and waiting for like the longest brownout yet again, we decided to go out and have a stroll but, before going home, my boyfriend starved for beer. We landed at Fort Cafe, one of our preferred places to have coffee and beer. I already swore to myself not to take alcohol anymore; maybe yes for social drinking but that would be all. I had hot coffee as usual and beer for my boyfriend. He loves beer and red wine. That’s what I don’t get about most men. They are always tagged with alcohol. But my boyfriend is not an alcoholic though. I’ve always talked to him on drinking moderately; the pros and cons of alcohol.
Drinking moderately increases the benefits of alcohol while lessening its risks. When one drinks more than the average, one can raise some of the risks that moderate consumption minimizes. For instance, a woman who drinks one beer a day is less likely to develop high blood pressure than a woman who’s a non-drinker. But when increased to two drinks, her risk of high blood pressure will rise up. Moderate drinking is considered up to one drink a day for women and two drinks for men. You may wonder about the inequality. Well, women tend to be smaller and have lesser blood volume than men. Also, women produce lower levels of an enzyme that breaks down alcohol.
Drinking small amounts with meals every day or two, which my boyfriend normally does, is much healthier than drinking 7 to 14 drinks on the weekends. The reason is that food slows the body’s absorption of alcohol, so that blood-alcohol levels don’t rise as rapidly (a meal complete with carbs, protein and fat slows the absorption three times). Another reason is that when you binge on beer or any alcoholic beverage, is quite dangerous; there’s the well-known danger of drinking and driving. In one study, men especially middle-aged who drink six or more bottles of beer at one sitting are six times more likely to have a fatal heart attack.
Alcoholism is more common in men but is deadlier in women. Women who drink too much develop cirrhosis of the liver more quickly and die from it sooner than men. In one study, female alcoholics developed enlarged hearts just as frequently as men, even though they consumed 40 percent less alcohol throughout their lives.
Women who drink moderately also don’t escape from physical problems. That’s the reason why I decided to abstain. This is related to pregnancy. Some studies suggest that even moderate drinking can cause subtle neurological and behavioral problems in infants. Women also should abstain taking alcohol especially prior to the period because for some of us women, it may provoke PMS (premenstrual syndrome).
Symptoms of alcohol dependency:
- Do you feel guilty about your drinking or annoyed by criticism of it?Have you tried and failed to cut down in the past?
- Do you often start your day with a drink?
- Have you consumed five or more drinks on at least five occasions in the past 30 days?
- Do you have a family history of alcoholism? Children of alcoholics are much more likely to become alcoholics themselves.
- Can you hold your liquor? The ability to drink alcohol without feeling its effects is a major predictor of alcoholism.
If you think you have a problem:
- Get medical help.
- Join a program. They include Alcoholics Anonymous, cognitive behavioral therapy, and motivational enhancement.
- Quit smoking. Smoking and drinking hand in hand. Moreover, among recovering alcoholics, about half the deaths are due to smoking.
-Is It Harmful? Is It Healthy? (A complete guide to what’s good for you…and what isn’t)
For most men and women who can drink in moderation and don’t have a specific reason to avoid drinking (pregnancy or medication), beer and wine can be both enjoyable and healthful. For others like me, abstinence is the best policy.