How Much Alcohol is too Much Alcohol?

“Everything in moderation. Nothing in excess.”  This is a famous quote by the ancient philosopher Socrates.  As you can see attempting to figure out what moderation means was not just a modern day issue.  History shows that humanity has been consuming alcohol for at least ten thousand years, and still the debate of how much is too much continues.

There Can Be Benefits

Research shows that drinking alcohol in moderation can provide several health benefits.  The American definition of moderation is one alcoholic beverage per day containing about fourteen grams of alcohol.  This formula is a per-day formula and does not allow for someone to consume two in a day or more.  Once the formula is exceeded in any way, the scale begins to tip toward alcohol’s dangerous effect rather than the benefits.

Here are some of the benefits research has illuminated if a person sticks to the one-per-day formula.

  • Lowered risk of Cardiovascular Disease
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Higher concentration of good cholesterol
  • More restful sleep
  • Possibly reduces risk of getting certain cancers because of alcohol increasing the B-vitamin Folate
  • Improved digestion

Alcohol is a double sided coin, however, and consuming too much has more negative impact than can be listed in this short excerpt.  By veering off the recommended moderation consumption, a person opens themselves up to major health complications.

 These Complications Can Include

  • Developing alcohol dependence
  • Bleeding of the brain
  • Inflammation of the liver
  • Scarring of the liver
  • Increased blood pressure leading to cardiomyopathy
  • Various forms of cancer in all sections of the digestive tract, including the mouth and colon
  • Evidence also suggests excess consumption is a contributing factor in developing breast cancer
  • Fatty liver resulting in jaundice
  • Erratic mood swings

Alcohol is clearly a risky substance.  If you are prone to alcoholism, or are already dependent on alcohol, it is recommended you abstain from alcohol altogether.  The line between health benefit and self destruction is too fine, and you can lose your footing with just one poor choice.  

If you truly are interested in the health benefits that moderate alcohol consumption provides, there are other ways to gain them.  Research shows that regular exercise, a healthy diet, and good sleep are the best ways to improve health.  For those who are prone to addiction, yoga, meditation, and getting massages can curb urges while granting health benefits simultaneously.  Nothing is more important than a great excuse to get regular massages.  

The Lakehouse Treatment Center understands the worlds of active addiction and active recovery. Years of comprehensive experience have helped us build a unique program focused on changing lives and rebuilding families. From detox to sober living, The Lakehouse program focuses on learning how to live and have fun again- a treatment experience like no other. Call us anytime: 877.762.3707


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