Avoiding Alcohol: How the Organs Recover

Organs such as the stomach, heart, and liver benefit from not drinking alcohol after just one month. What does abstinence do for weight loss? And how much alcohol is safe?

Give up alcohol for a month – that’s what many people make at the turn of the year. The good resolution is particularly popular in Great Britain: Around four million Britons are taking part. Researchers from the University of Sussex have examined what a four-week alcohol waiver brings. Study participants said they slept better, had more energy, lost weight, and improved skin condition.

The experiences are easy to explain: alcohol not only has a lot of calories, but it also stimulates the appetite and impairs fat metabolism. Because alcohol is a toxin that affects many organs and functions in the body, abstinence leads to a healthier, fitter body. Because many organs can regenerate sooner or later.

How organs benefit from abstaining from alcohol

These are the effects of abstaining from alcohol for just one month on different organs:

  • Alcohol stimulates the production of gastric acid in the stomach. If this happens constantly, the stomach lining becomes inflamed. But even after a long and regular consumption of alcohol, the stomach recovers after abstinence for one to two months.
  • The heart also benefits from not drinking alcohol. A study of 3,000 beer drinkers showed that from 0.8 per thousand alcohol in the blood, every third person gets cardiac arrhythmia and every fourth person suffers from tachycardia. But after a recovery period of half a day, the heartbeat returns to normal. People who are prone to cardiac arrhythmias in particular benefit from an alcohol-free month: the heart can get back into the right rhythm and the water balance also normalizes. Those affected feel fitter overall.
  • The liver benefits the most from abstaining from alcohol for a month. She suffers the most from drinking too much alcohol because she is responsible for detoxifying the body and distributing energy. But if you constantly have to break down alcohol, it stores it in the form of fat and becomes what is known as a fatty liver. This can grow to twice the normal size and often leads to diabetes and obesity. But a fatty liver can also regress. After just one month, this development can be clearly seen in the liver values ​​in the blood.

Enjoyable abstinence: cocktails without alcohol

Even a relatively short period of one month without alcohol is a blessing for the body – and the effects are clearly felt. Many drink less than usual even after abstinence. Those who do not drink alcohol therefore do not have to go without delicious drinks – there are many non-alcoholic cocktails, for example.

How much alcohol is safe?

Many people misjudge the “normal”, i.e. harmless to health, limits of alcohol consumption:

  • Doctors recommend no more than 12 grams of pure alcohol per day for women – for a maximum of five days per week. That corresponds to 100 milliliters of wine or a small beer per day.
  • For men, the limit is about twice as high, i.e. a maximum of 200 milliliters of wine or two small glasses of beer per day.
  • Those who do not drink alcohol at all for several days a week and drink two to three glasses of beer or wine at the weekend with dinner or with friends usually have nothing to worry about. But if you are already getting nervous if you have to do without your after-work beer, you should seriously reconsider your alcohol consumption.

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