Alcohol has adverse effects on the body

Drinking alcohol regularly can have negative impacts on the body. (File photo)

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Although alcohol may be more fun to drink, water is far and away what our bodies need most. That’s why Dr. James Stirton, head chiropractor of Winters Family Chiropractic, is back to serve up knowledge on the impacts of hydration and inebriation.

Renowned for its buzz, its confidence-
boosting and for helping people discover their ability to dance, alcohol’s benefits don’t outweigh its downside. Even though moderation should always be a consideration, alcohol hosts a variety of negative impacts for those who frequently indulge.

“Alcohol does have a lot of bad effects on the body. Not just short-term effects, but also long-term effects. Some people don’t realize that you can get diabetes from chronic alcoholism. You don’t have to be a massive drinker either, you just have to be drinking regularly,” said Stirton. “It affects your liver and your kidneys have to process more because it’s a diuretic. So, it causes those organ systems to work more. It’s just like if you did drugs that made your heart work too fast, your heart will wear out. It’s the same idea for any organ system. Chronic use of alcohol will wear out your pancreas and that’s why you get diabetes.”

According to Stirton, alcohol has bad erosion affects in the stomach while also increasing one’s chance of developing Barrett’s Esophagus and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease — or GERD. Alongside that, alcohol promotes dehydration which dries out the skin and lubrication within one’s joints and disks.

“The hangovers you feel after drinking too much are the immediate effects. It’s like you’re recovering from a poisoning and your body is trying to pee out all the poison, and that’s the kidneys and liver working harder,” Stirton explained. “When you wake up your head is pounding, your stomach is raw and you feel like you’ve been poisoned. Something my uncle told me when I was 21 was to drink three glasses of water after a night of drinking and that absolutely gets your body recovering while you’re sleeping and replenishes the fluid you’ve been peeing out.”

Luckily, there’s water to the rescue. When one opts to guzzle water rather than beer, one’s tapping into its wide variety of benefits such as lubricating the joints, keeping organs working optimally and bolstering the body’s overall wellness.

“To keep your body amply hydrated, all the tissues get what they need. And there’s not a set amount of water everybody needs to drink because different sized bodies require different amounts of water for its processes. The general rule of thumb is to take your body weight and divide that by two and that’s how many ounces of water per day you should be drinking,” said Stirton. “You just need to understand that alcohol is a poison in the body that’s directly related to the dose. The sooner you stop putting the poison in and start putting the water in, the sooner your body gets processing through that toxin. And if you stop drinking altogether and start having a more hydrated life, all the damages from your alcohol abuse can heal.”

If one has more questions, call Winters Family Chiropractic at 530-795-4500 or reach out to Stirton directly by emailing him at It’s like the good doctor always says, “If you’re not certain, ask Dr. Stirton.”

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FILE: A participant dances during the 2018 Festival de la Comunidad. Photo by Rosemary Hemenway/Winters Express

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