Alcohol and its Effects on the Liver

Alcohol Can Damage Your Organs

It goes without saying that too much alcohol is not good for you and the same principle applies to drugs as well. Even moderate drinking can have dangerous side effects on both your mental health and your physical health. The liver plays an essential role in the bodies ability to function normally and works to filter the blood and process food. In addition, it also removes chemicals, impurities, and toxins that enter the body.

When you drink an alcoholic beverage, the alcohol enters the bloodstream where it makes its way to the liver. This is where the substance is processed and metabolized by the liver. Since our bodies view alcohol as a toxin, its natural reaction is to want to get rid of it as soon as possible. The liver is an amazing organ that filters this alcohol and allows it to leave the body. When drinking to excess, though, the liver works overtime just to rid the toxins out of your system. This can take a harsh toll on your organs and can have negative side effects on your health such as:

  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Hepatitis as a result of alcohol
  • Fatty, unhealthy liver

Heaving drinking can result in liver disease as a ramification of prolonged and excessive alcohol consumption. There is no cure for liver disease and it can only be managed through lifestyle changes.

Risks Involved

Alcohol consumption is commonly believed to be the safer ‘vice’ but this myth could not be further from the truth. Since alcohol can be legally purchased by anyone who is over the legal drinking age, it is very accessible and widely accepted. Conversely, it is also widely misused and abused, especially with those who are in their college/university years.

In the U.S., there are an estimated five million individuals who are currently battling liver disease, with a percentage of those losing their lives to the disease. The liver is a vital organ and, without it, our bodies simply cannot function.

Persistent and chronic drinking essentially destroys crucial liver cells that are imperative to a properly functioning liver. As a result of these destroyed cells, various diseases may ensue such as cirrhosis, cell mutation, and cancer of the liver. In order to prevent this from happening to you, drinking in moderation or abstinence from alcohol altogether is the best way to help mitigate the chances of health complications as a result of alcohol.

Liver Cancer

Alcohol abuse is the main contributor to liver cancer and can cause permanent scarring and irreversible damage. Each and every year, close to half a million individuals on a global scale die as a result of liver cancer. Since our bodies treat alcohol as a toxin, it harms cells, preventing them from repairing the liver. Over time, the liver will no longer be able to repair itself.

Some symptoms of liver disease and liver cancer are:

  • Weight loss
  • Yellow skin
  • Swelling in the abdomen
  • Perpetual weakness
  • Lack of appetite
  • Frequent vomiting

If you or someone close to you is struggling with alcohol addiction or alcohol abuse, it’s important that you get help right away. Alcohol abuse can lead to complications later on in life, even if the side effects do not seem present at the moment. Alcohol abuse will creep up on you later on in life and oftentimes, the damage has already been done. You must get the appropriate help now in order to mitigate your chances of developing alcohol-related illnesses in the future.


If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

is a proud alumni member of WhiteSands Treatment. After living a life of chaos, destruction and constant let downs, Mark was able to make a complete turnaround that sparked a new way of life. He is serious about his recovery along with helping others. At WhiteSands Treatment, we offer support to you in your homes or when you are out living in your daily lives.