This is the continuation of a series on alcohol and todays post is on alcohol and its effect on men.
Relax and enjoy this read.
As a way of introduction, it is important to note that more men than women engage in binge drinking. So therefore, more men get drunk and experience the effect of being drunk than women.
Excessive drinking poses significant risks to men's health and safety, and the potential harm increase as the amount of alcohol consumed increases.
Another thing to note is that men are also more likely than women to take other risks (such as abusing other substances, having multiple sex partners, or failing to wear a seat belt), which, when combined with alcohol, increase their risk of illness, injury, or death. I mean you have heard of men who had children just because of a mistake of drinking too much.
Lets talk a little about the epidemiology that relates alcohol to men
Like I earlier said adult men consume more alcohol than women.
According to a recent study, almost 59 percent of adult men were reported to have consumed alcohol in the last 30 day as compared to 47 percent of adult women in a certain study population.
There is a significant gender gap in binge drinking, with men being nearly twice as likely to engage in the behaviour as women.
Approximately 22% of men report binge drinking and do so 5 times per month on average, consuming 8 drinks per binge. I suspect it is more in Africa, however no studies to prove this yet.
In 2019, 7% of men had an alcohol use disorder, compared to 4% of women.
Alcohol is linked to injury, violence, and other negative outcomes.
Alcohol-related hospitalizations are more common in men than in women.
More than three-quarters of deaths from excessive drinking occur in men, totalling more than 140,000 deaths in the United States each year.
Men in fatal motor vehicle traffic crashes are 50% more likely than women to have been intoxicated (i.e., a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher).
A drunk violent man
Excessive alcohol consumption increases aggression and may increase the likelihood of physically assaulting someone else.
Alcohol is a significant risk factor for the commission of sexual violence. While growing up, my neighbour will come home drunk and beat his wife up and go to sleep.
I used to be of the opinion that it was because the woman was triggering him but in recent times I discovered that the effect of alcohol on aggression in men is a real thing.
In addition, males are more than three times more likely than females to commit suicide, and they are more likely to have been drinking prior to suicide.
I know studies say more women than men are depressed but it is very important to note that more men have severe depression than women.
Alcohol and Cancer
Men are more likely than women to develop cancers of the mouth, throat, oesophagus, liver, and colon.
Alcohol consumption also raises the risk of prostate cancer.
Alcohol depresses the central nervous system, making it difficult for some men to obtain and maintain an erection. If you remember my post on erectile dysfunction, you would remember that erection starts in the brain before the penis.
Importantly, alcohol changes the chemicals in our brains, including the part responsible for inhibition.
As a result, men are far more likely to act uninhibitedly after drinking.
When alcohol is involved, unprotected sex is far more common, which can lead to sexually transmitted diseases and unplanned pregnancy.
Alcohol and Sex
Heavy and consistent alcohol use can harm the liver, resulting in low testosterone levels and increased oestrogen levels, both of which can contribute to erectile dysfunction. I am sure you are like how does testosterone relate to the liver. Well, studies have shown that 90% of men with liver disease have low testosterone level and it has been linked with erectile dysfunction.
In conclusion, alcohol can have an impact on male fertility.
Alcohol can have an impact on appearance and cause weight gain.
An obese man
The calories we consume each day from everything we eat and drink are increased by drinking alcohol.
Alcohol calories are 'empty calories,' meaning they provide little nutritional benefit. As a result, drinking more calories leads to weight gain.
The calorie content of various alcoholic beverages varies, and many are high in sugar. So, for example, a bottle of beer has the same number of calories as a slice of pizza, and a large glass of wine has the same number of calories as an ice cream.
Alcohol also replaces the fat our bodies use for energy. Because we cannot store alcohol, our bodies prioritize metabolism over nutrient absorption and fat burning.
Typically, men gain weight around their midsection giving rise to the term "beer belly." The medical term is called truncal obesity. Because it is laid directly on the organs inside the abdomen (belly).
Fat around the trunk of our bodies is thought to be especially harmful. Weight gain from any cause, including drinking, as well as the effect of alcohol on men's hormones, can also show around the chest in men, causing the breasts to grow larger—a condition known as'man boobs.' This is a very common phenomenon.
The truth is that all alcoholic drinks contain calories, and the more we drink, the more likely we are to gain weight. You might be wondering and saying that there are people who don't add weight and drink a lot.
Well, there are people who are fast metabolizers. Remember those people who don't add weight no matter what they eat.
Other ways that alcohol can alter a person's appearance include thinning of hair, dry and scaly skin. Some of them go on to have bad breath.
Deaths Caused by Illness
While cirrhosis and liver cancer are the two most serious health concerns for both men and women who have been addicted to alcohol for a long time, there are some conditions for which men are more likely to die.
According to research from the University of Minnesota's School of Public Health, alcoholic men are more likely to die from certain health conditions. When compared to a control group of men and women over the age of 65, the researchers discovered:
Men were twice as likely as women to die from liver cancer.
Funny enough, all the deaths I have seen from liver cancer are men.
Interesting facts here
Men were four times more likely than women to die from mouth, throat, or oesophageal cancer.
Men were three times more likely than women to die from a stroke.
Men were nearly twice as likely as women to die from alcoholic liver disease.
Men were nine times more likely than women to die from alcohol-related heart disease.
Few points to note
One of the most important preventable risk factors for cancer is alcohol use. Men are more likely than women to develop cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon as a result of alcohol use. Alcohol consumption also raises the risk of prostate cancer.
Alcohol has direct link with Erectile dysfunction. Better sex and fertility means less alcohol.
- If you are addicted to alcohol, there are some steps you can take to reduce your intake. You should also be aware that discussing it with your family will help you reduce your intake.
- Drinking water or soft drinks instead of alcoholic beverages can also help you reduce the amount of alcohol you consume overall. But soft drinks have their own detriments.