Alcohol is linked to age in lots of ways. You have to be old enough to drink it legally, and once you are, it can age you faster than normal. Heavy drinking can have a direct effect on certain parts of your body and on your mental health as you get older. And it can have some unhealthy indirect effects, as well.
It Can Dehydrate You
As you get older, you have less water in your body and — for reasons that aren’t quite clear –you also feel thirsty less often. That makes seniors more likely to be dehydrated. Drinking alcohol can pull more water out of your body and make your chances of dehydration even higher.
Our skin gets thinner and drier as we age. It’s a natural process called intrinsic aging, and it’s something you can’t control. Extrinsic aging is when your skin ages faster than it should because of your environment and how you live. That’s where alcohol comes in — it dehydrates you and dries out your skin. You can slow that down by drinking less.
Alcohol can affect the way some vital organs work and make them age faster. While heavy drinkers are more likely to have cirrhosis (permanent damage to your liver), even moderate drinking can lead to problems like fatty liver disease. It also can make it harder for your kidneys to do their thing.
Every alcoholic drink goes “straight to your head,” or at least to your brain. Heavy drinking over a long time can shrink brain cells and lead to alcohol-related brain damage (ARBD) and certain types of dementia. Symptoms of that include lack of judgment, organization, or emotional control, trouble staying focused, and anger issues.
Alcohol can affect the way your body fights off life-threatening illnesses like tuberculosis or pneumonia. This can be especially serious for older people. Researchers are also studying the possibility that alcoholic liver disease might be caused, at least in part, by your immune system attacking healthy body tissues.
Continue reading the full and original article about how alcohol affects the ageing process from: WebMD
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You might also be interested in reading: What Happens to Your Body When You Stop Consuming Alcohol.