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Alcohol Addiction and Weight Problems

People who drink alcohol tend to consume more calories in a day than people who do not drink. This is due to the fact that most alcoholic beverages are loaded with calories, especially drinks that also contain fruit juice or other mixers. People who are addicted to alcohol need to consume more alcohol to feel normal or to become intoxicated, so this increases their chances for weight gain from the frequent alcohol consumption. Alcohol not only contains many calories but it can also increase a person’s appetite, especially after binge drinking, causing too many calories to be consumed. A person who struggles with alcohol abuse may also have other addictive behaviors that will increase his likelihood for weight problems.

Alcohol Addiction and Heart Disease

When a person is overweight, he increases his risk for heart disease. When a person is addicted to alcohol and is overweight, the risk to the heart is even greater. According to the American Heart Association, drinking too much alcohol can raise the level of triglycerides in the blood. This can lead to:

  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Heart failure
  • Sudden cardiac death

Many studies have been published in recent years associating red wine with a reduced rate of heart disease. Some research suggests that this is due to the red wine only. Other studies conclude that the benefits are from the flavonoids and other antioxidants found in the red wine that are also found in grapes, grape juice, and other fruits and vegetables. The American Heart Association reports that no direct comparison trials have been done to determine the specific impact wine and alcohol have on developing heart disease or stroke. They strongly recommend that those who do not drink alcohol continue to stay alcohol free.

Alcohol Addiction and Stroke

Because alcohol consumption can increase the risk of high blood pressure, it can also increase the risk of death from stroke. Research shows that a person’s stroke risk is more than doubled the hour immediately after consuming as little as one alcoholic beverage. Stroke risk is increased in people who are overweight and who also smoke. Men who drink alcohol or who struggle with alcohol addiction are more likely to gain weight around their mid-section. This also increases the chance for stroke.

Alcohol Addiction and Weight Gain

Excess weight is associated with many health problems. Alcohol can increase a person’s weight due to the consumption of too many calories and over-eating from an increased appetite. Alcohol addiction can also cause problems with malnutrition, as the person addicted to alcohol may crave unhealthy foods or simply substitute eating a meal with drinking. Weight gain on its own is dangerous to overall health. Weight gain caused from too much alcohol dramatically increases the risk of death from alcohol consumption.

Finding Help for Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction can lead to weight gain which can increase a person’s risk of heart disease and stroke. If you or a loved one struggle with alcohol addiction, we are here to help you. Call our toll-free number 24 hours a day to speak to a helpline counselor. We are ready to answer your questions about alcohol addiction and help you find the right treatment program.