Health Implications of Alcohol Consumption in Women
With today’s pressure on women to maintain a career, a healthy marriage, and raise a family, it is no wonder that the spike in women consuming alcohol is high, and rising.
Gone are the days when men used drinking to show their freedom to disregard responsibilities at work or home and women stayed at home tending to the domestic duties.
Women are now finding themselves with a solid education under their belts and in working environments where they are equal or superior to their male counterparts. With this comes the age old culture of ‘after work drinks’ with your peers, or celebrating work achievements with a celebratory cocktail… or three!
There are a few factors that contribute to women consuming more alcohol than they did in the past. Often women drink with work peers to try to keep up with the culture that men have set for years before women were in the workforce. Sometimes it can be to escape the stress and pressure that the modern day woman now faces. Anxiety is more prevalent in women these days too, and women often turn to alcohol as a relaxant.
However, using alcohol as an escape or relaxant has its drawbacks for women and some of them are outlined below.
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- Beyond the cost that alcohol incurs, there are health implications that come with too much alcohol. Although drinking can help with falling asleep faster, it can interfere with REM sleep. Not getting a good night’s sleep then affects your daytime hours, causing drowsiness, poor concentration, and can even affect your memory.
- Drinking can also have an impact on your exercise performance and recovery time.
- The impact on the brain, liver and heart is greater for women, even when drinking the same amount as a man.
- The risk of breast cancer increases with each additional drink you have per night too, which is a good incentive to cut back on your daily intake.
- Regular drinking, and especially binge drinking is very detrimental to women in their childbearing years as it can damage a fetus before a pregnancy is even established. Drinking too much can cause fertility to be an issue also. Studies have actually shown that women who have three or more drinks per day are more than likely to have reproductive imbalances.
It all comes down to moderation and knowing your limits. Being educated about the health implications connected to alcohol consumption is important.