Alcoholism runs rampant on this continent and most others. Officials could try and assess how many people drink above recommended levels (no more than two a day for men, one a day for women), but it would likely be a fruitless search.
How many people who do drink a lot are completely honest with themselves to begin with?
Amid this overuse of alcohol comes good news from Japan. And it effectively gets rid of this idea when someone is considering cutting down on booze: “ah, what’s the point, damage is done, I’ll have another one.”
That’s because they found this: men who drink alcohol regularly (and heavily) can improve their health by deciding to be sober one or two days a week. Even for people who believe they are so dependant on alcohol that they are past the point of no return can take this study to heart. Start slow with one day a week. Then make it two days a week.
According to the study, doing so can have major benefits on one’s health. One or two days a week can help counteract the negative effects of booze. Researchers found that men who drank a lot nearly every day had a much higher risk of death (any cause). But men who drank the same amount except less often did not have any increased risk of death.
This supports the idea in Japan that taking a “liver holiday” is a good idea. The researchers looked at nearly 90,000 middle- aged men and women for up to 13 years. At the beginning, 68% of men were regular drinkers. Heavy drinking meant they had at least 300 g of alcohol per week. Those who drank at least five days a week had a greater risk of dying during the 13-year study.
Compared to men who drank only a handful of times a month, heavy drinkers were 55% more likely to die. The good news is that men who drank the same amount as the heavy drinkers — but who took a few days off each week — had no increased death risk. Therein lies the advantage of taking a liver holiday.
Researchers stress that you still can’t drink as much as you want and take a few days off. This will damage the body in many ways. As for the link to death, it’s thought that heavy, daily drinkers may keep exposing their bodies to “acetaldehyde”, which is formed when your body digests alcohol. This chemical is believed to promote cancer.
For more news and treatments for alcoholism check out the next issue of Homeopathic Healing.