The link between alcohol and heart health is rather complicated. You may have heard about scientific studies that recommend consuming moderate amounts of alcohol to help prevent heart disease. On the other hand, alcohol can also contribute to heart failure. So is alcohol good or bad for your health? Keep reading to learn more, and always consult your cardiologist for advice on a heart-healthy lifestyle.
Beneficial Effects of Alcohol
Certain people may actually benefit from consuming moderate amounts of alcohol. If you’re an older adult with high cholesterol, alcohol may help by lowering cholesterol. It can also lower high blood pressure. These actions might reduce the risk of heart disease. However, alcohol consumption tends to have more adverse effects on those who do not have risk factors for heart disease and those who are middle-aged or younger. It’s also important to bear in mind that the definition of moderate alcohol consumption is no more than one drink daily for women and up to two drinks daily for men. Furthermore, your cardiologist will likely recommend that you use healthier lifestyle remedies for heart disease prevention, such as exercise and diet, instead of consuming alcohol.
Adverse Effects of Alcohol
Any amount of alcohol alters the way the heart functions. Heavy alcohol consumption can gradually lead to the weakening of the heart muscle. The organ can also become enlarged, a condition referred to as cardiomegaly. Cardiomegaly adversely affects the heart’s ability to pump blood efficiently.
Heart Disease & Alcohol
If you have heart disease, it’s very important to talk to your cardiologist about your alcohol consumption. When heart disease is caused by alcohol consumption, continued use of alcoholic beverages in any amount will worsen the condition. Fortunately, quitting drinking will help treat the condition.
When you meet with your cardiologist, discuss all of your lifestyle habits so that he or she can help you improve your heart health. Schedule an appointment with the cardiologists of Cardiac Solutions in Phoenix. Call us today at (623) 876-8816 and ask about our educational courses and cardiac care services.