Venous blood sampling in the crook of the elbow.  Upper arm is tied off with a band.  Needle stuck in skin.  Blood collects in the tube.  (Photo: Adobe Stock, Werner)

Many people underestimate the consumption of alcohol. But what does consumption lead to and where are the limits? How can a diseased liver be recognized and what does alcohol fasting bring?


at Women a daily amount of 12 grams or more of pure alcohol can become critical. That corresponds to about an eighth of a liter of wine. men on the other hand, tolerate twice as much. the reasons according to alcohol researcher Helmut Seitz, the following can be the case: Women would have less body water and therefore a higher alcohol level if they consumed the same amount of alcohol per kilogram of body weight. Also, women metabolize less alcohol in their stomachs than men, and more alcohol enters their systems.

According to market check health expert Lothar Zimmermann limits for critical alcohol consumption gradually. That is, there is no value that is the same for everyone. The individual limit also depends on whether those affected medication take, which must also be metabolized by the liver. Also play the genetics a role or diseases such as hepatitis B, which can damage the liver. The health expert recommends having at least two alcohol-free days a week.

Liver disease can remain silent for a long time because the organ has a good ability to regenerate. Chronic liver disease develops over years or even decades, with initially general symptoms symptoms such as exhaustion, tiredness or itching.

To diagnose a diseased liver is a blood test necessary at the family doctor. The liver enzymes from the blood are crucial to see how the liver is doing with the metabolism. Particular attention is paid to the Gamma GT, the so-called alcoholic enzyme. In addition, doctors can Ultrasonic detect from the liver whether fatty liver is present.

Doctors can use a blood test to diagnose a diseased liver.

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Another possibility to investigate is tissue sampling from the liver. With the help of the biopsy, doctors can clearly diagnose cirrhosis of the liver. The samples taken show how many cells have turned into connective tissue and how badly the tissue is inflamed.

In most cases, one forms first alcoholic fatty liver. This can regress again when those affected stop drinking alcohol. The fatty liver can possibly lead to a liver fibrosis to an irreversible one liver cirrhosis in which the liver structure is destroyed and replaced by connective tissue. As a result, the liver can no longer adequately break down the toxins. Some patients need a new liver transplant. In addition, the risk of liver cancer is higher because the breakdown products of alcohol penetrate deep into the cell, get directly into the cell nucleus and damage the genetic material.

The result of liver cirrhosis is a hemorrhage, explains Helmut Seitz, hepatologist and alcohol researcher. It is about one dangerous disease, in which patients vomit two liters of blood in a gush. If they are not helped quickly, patients can even die from it.

This increases in all places in the body where the alcohol flows cancer risk: for mouth, throat, larynx, esophagus, stomach and large intestine. In women, the risk of breast cancer may increase.

Further consequences According to health expert Lothar Zimmermann, these can be premature dementia, increased high blood pressure, gastritis or loss of intelligence. In addition, regular alcohol consumption can lead to impure skin and reduce the body’s defenses because the immune system is weakened.

On the liver abstaining from alcohol has the greatest impact, as it suffers the most: it is responsible for detoxifying the body, distributing energy and defatting. A week without alcohol can reduce fatty liver from 80 percent to 30 percent. This development can be seen in the liver values ​​in the blood.

Alcohol stimulates the production of acid in the stomach stomach on. If this happens constantly, the stomach lining can become inflamed. After regularly abstaining from alcohol, the stomach recovers after one to two months of abstinence.

The person on the left holds out a glass of alcohol to the other person.  The person on the right holds their hand as a "stop sign".  So she refuses alcohol.  (Photo: Adobe Stock, Pixel Shot)

Caption: Alcohol fasting has a positive effect on many organs.

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That too heart benefits from abstinence from alcohol. After half a day of rest, the heartbeat has already calmed down again. Months of abstinence have positive effects, especially for people who are prone to cardiac arrhythmias: the heart can return to its normal rhythm and the water balance normalises. Those affected felt generally healthier.

Alcohol is high in calories, increases appetite and impairs fat metabolism. According to alcohol researcher Helmut Seitz, patients should not consume salt because it keeps the water in the body. Also be one balanced nutrition important. Certain foods, especially vegetables, have antioxidant compounds. Grape juice, green tea, and artichokes are good choices.

One way to compensate for the lack of alcohol consumption is soft drinks. Alcohol-free sparkling wine, for example, has about a third as many calories as the alcohol-based variety: most under 30 calories instead of around 70 calories. But be careful: the alcohol content of the base wine can be reduced to less than 0.5 percent by volume under vacuum. However, there will always be a small amount of residual alcohol.

The information “non-alcoholic” does not mean that the drink contains zero percent alcohol. However, according to European food legislation, manufacturers may market such declared beverages with a maximum alcohol content of 0.5 percent.

Only if “without alcohol” says on the label, the drink actually contains no alcohol.

Three glass bottles are each filled with red, orange and green juice.  Various fruits such as strawberries, oranges, grapes, berries and kiwi lie around the bottles.  (Photo: Adobe Stock, photocrew)

Juices can be an alternative to alcoholic beverages.

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Another substitute drug are fruit juices. However, these have a high sugar content: apple juice, for example, has ten grams of sugar per 100 milliliters. According to Lothar Zimmermann, you should avoid drinks with a lot of sugar and drink water or cold fruit tea instead.

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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