The Consequences of Alcohol on Physiology and Wellness

The Consequences of Alcohol on Physiology and Wellness
Picture: National Academy of Sports Medicine. Certified
Nutrition Coach.

The advice to drink alcohol in moderate quantities is due to the harmful short-term and long-term impacts it has on the body. As a toxic substance that is soluble in water, ethanol and its byproducts can harm various parts of the body. The consequences of alcohol on physiology and wellness both explain why people drink alcohol and why moderation is suggested.

Alcohol consumption, especially in moderate to harmful amounts, has been linked to an increased risk of over 200 health conditions, including cancers (breast, prostate, and colorectal), cardiovascular disease, neuropsychiatric conditions, gastrointestinal diseases, and diabetes. Women are more susceptible to ethanol-related illnesses, especially breast cancer with even moderate drinking. Alcohol consumption causes over 88,000 deaths annually in the US and over 3.3 million deaths worldwide.

The protective effects of ethanol against certain diseases are not sufficient to outweigh its harmful consequences, and other factors have a greater impact on promoting overall health.

Do I drink too much?

You can use USAUDIT to find out if you are drinking too much and need some information on how to incorporate alcohol into a healthy lifestyle.

On top of that, before joining the gym and starting working out with a certified personal trainer, it might be a good idea to have a mediacal checkup in order to eliminate the consequences of alcohol on physiology and wellness.



Book a session with a certified personal trainer in San Francisco today and start your journey to a healthier body right now.

Alcohol’s Effects on the Body

Consuming excessive amounts of alcohol, whether in one sitting or over time, can have severe consequences on one’s health. The following outlines the impact alcohol can have on the body.


Alcohol affects the communication processes in the brain and alters its appearance and functionality. This can lead to mood and behavior changes, hindering the ability to think clearly and move with precision.


Long-term or excessive alcohol consumption can harm the heart by leading to problems such as cardiomyopathy (weakening of heart muscle), arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats), stroke, and high blood pressure.


Excessive alcohol consumption can have a negative impact on the liver and cause various liver issues such as fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, fibrosis, and cirrhosis.


Alcohol causes the pancreas to produce toxic substances that can eventually lead to pancreatitis, a dangerous inflammation and swelling of the blood vessels in the pancreas that prevents proper digestion.


There is strong evidence that drinking alcohol can cause cancer. The National Toxicology Program of the US Department of Health and Human Services classifies alcohol as a known human carcinogen. The risk of developing an alcohol-related cancer increases with the amount of alcohol consumed, both in regular and binge drinking. Alcohol is estimated to have caused 3.5% of cancer deaths in the US, or about 19,500 deaths. Alcohol has been linked to higher risks of head and neck cancer, esophageal cancer, liver cancer, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer.

Immune System

Excessive alcohol consumption can impair the immune system, making an individual more susceptible to diseases such as pneumonia and tuberculosis. Heavy drinking on one occasion or over time can decrease the body’s ability to fight off infections, even for up to a day after getting drunk.