Heart Health Namibia

Your Heart. Your Choice

Alcohol

Does alcohol have an impact on your heart health?

We’re all aware of the devastating impacts that alcohol can have on our livers, our brains, our domestic lives and the safety of our roads but it also affects the health of your heart. It has been found that people who drink too much suffer from high blood pressure and this undoubtedly increases your risk of heart disease. On top of this, heavy drinking increases your likelihood to develop an abnormal heart rhythm which can become permanent. If your heart does not beat with a regular rhythm it increases your likelihood of forming a blood clot. On top of this, chronic alcohol usage damages the heart cells which will reduce the hearts ability to pump. This can eventually lead to heart failure: a chronic, fatal condition.

How much alcohol can I drink?

In honesty, no amount of alcohol is safe but the recommended maximum amount is 14 units in a week and no more than 4 units in one sitting.

How can I cut down my drinking?

Cutting down on alcohol can be beneficial for everyone regardless of how much you drink. If you feel you need to cut down here are a few tips:

  • Try reducing the number of days you drink in the week
  • If you are out drinking try swapping every other drink with a non-alcoholic one
  • Arrange activities that don’t revolve around drinking so instead of going to the bar try going for a walk or visit a friend.

If you need any more information on cutting down on your alcohol have a look at: –
https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/advice/how-to-reduce-your-drinking/how-to-cut-down/

Alcohol Can Weaken Your Heart!

If you want a healthy heart you should swap alcohol with non-alcoholic drinks.

By Chantelle Kaffer

Alcohol abuse leads to increased blood pressure! The increased blood pressure causes the heart to strain and that can lead to heart disease. Alcohol contains a lot of calories that can lead to obesity. Obesity can increase the amount of fat in our blood that can lead to clots. Small clots can cause abstruction that will need your heart to pump faster to be able to pump blood to your whole body. A large clot can cause a heart attack. The maximum of weekly alcohol consumption is 14 units that can reduce the risk of heart disease. Alcohol abuse is linked with raised blood pressure that can weaken the heart muscle. Binge (excessive) drinking which is more than 4 drinks at once can cause abnormal heart rhythms.

Can we change this? The answer is YES! We can swap alcoholic drinks for soft drink alternatives and follow the guidelines on drinking below the maximum units of 14 a week (2 units a day).

So if the harmful chemical carbon monoxide, replaces oxygen being carried by red blood cells. This reduces the amount of oxygen circulated around the body which means later on it would have an enormous effect on your heart. Reduced oxygen received from the lungs results in the heart having to work harder to pump around the same amount of oxygen.

Make a change in your drinking habits to ensure you heart is healthy!

1) How does excess alcohol intake effect heart disease?'

Increases risk of heart disease
Decreases risk of heart disease
Doesn't have an effect on risk of heart disease
Not applicable

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