Alcoholism and Obesity – Their Relationship


Alcoholism and Obesity are two health conditions you must not allow to affect you all at the same time.

From the definitions of the two terminologies you may not see clearly the absolute similarities however these two conditions (alcoholism and obesity) may be much more correlated that you have ever imagined. If you look at the two conditions, you will realize that both are provoked by an episode of loss of control. It may not matter how the loss of control took place whether it was genetically instigated, propelled by environmental factors or it was just a moment of one’s weak moments does not count, the common denominator is there is a loss of control.

Many people suffering from these conditions normally invest heavily in the management of their addiction occasioned by various factors like struggling to maintaining control, feeling guilty or just juggling with when they will access their addictive elements that is alcohol or food. With this both conditions can grow progressively worse and when taken to the extreme can be life threatening.

The powerful ingredients making alcoholism and obesity to be similar are the contents of what causes their being addictive which are ethanol and food and how they work on the brain. For instance ethanol stimulates reward centers in the brain exactly the way sugar, salt and fat also do. It is because of this that people with a tendency of over-drinking may also have the same tendency to overeating.

Alcoholism and Obesity – Alcohol and Weight loss

Ignorantly people often say that alcohol consumption increases appetite and therefore alcohol consumers are motivated to eat more thereby gaining weight. This is not true since ethanol which is the key addictive ingredient in alcoholic drinks and fat from foods have approximately the same amount of calories however those people suffering from alcoholism have a tendency not to be affected by obesity primarily because they are often malnourished due to poor feeding habits having replaced a portion of their food calories with calories from alcohol

According to a study conducted in 2005 sampling regular alcohol consumers it was established that those who drank the smallest amount (i.e. one drink per day) with the extreme frequency (i.e. three to seven days per week) had a lower body mass index (BMI) than those who drank more occasionally, but in larger units. Even though we may not rely heavily on these findings they may indicate some relationship between over-drinking and overeating.

Connection between Alcoholism and Obesity

Early 2010 researchers from Washington University School of medicine released one of the most important findings regarding the connection between obesity and alcoholism. The study was based on two large alcoholism surveys previously done where 80,000 people participated in both.  They then put proper control on all the factors of the study and the ultimate finding was that in quite recent survey those with a family history of alcoholism had a greater chance of being affected by obesity. For women, who had a 49 percent greater chance, this was especially true. One possible reason is that in trying to avoid the alcoholic behaviors observed in their families, people replace alcohol with a different addiction.

Surprisingly enough researchers did not find any connection or association between obesity and family history of alcoholism in the first survey. The fact that the link strengthened as much as it did in the relatively short amount of time between the two surveys suggests that environmental factors (the increase in sedentary times; the increased prevalence of fatty, sugary and salty foods in grocery stores and restaurants; and the reduced access to opportunities for activity) are involved. In brief a genetic risk might be submissive in a world that makes maintaining one’s weight a relatively straightforward task. But, change the environment to make unhealthy eating easier and being active harder, and the problem will become apparent.

Finally in their (researchers’) comments in their publication they focused on changes to our food environment, suggesting that obesity may be rising in “individuals vulnerable to addiction. This may be specifically the result of a changing food environment and the increased availability of highly palatable foods.”

Alcoholism and Obesity – Overlapping Brain Pathways

More and more, neuroscientists are finding similarities in the pathways that lead to excessive eating and dependence on alcohol and other drugs. Both obesity and alcohol addiction have been linked to the brain’s reward system. Overconsumption can trigger a gradual increase in the reward threshold, requiring more and more palatable high-fat food or strengthening alcohol to satisfy cravings. It is no secret that addiction and obesity the two major and most challenging health problems in U.S and many other nations across the globe today. It is therefore important that we learn from these research findings to not just keep talking but to put into practice some of the knowledge we have gathered about addiction to the study of overeating and obesity.

Every day possess an opportunity to learn something new and we are privileged to be learning more about how eating and drinking are indistinguishably connected at the physiologic level. These physiologic commonalities help to explain why the behaviors of excessive food intake and excessive alcohol consumption share so many similarities. Nonetheless, in appreciation of possible link between obesity and alcoholism we all have a duty to unlock the link and use the findings to understand, treat and most importantly prevent these two diseases from further damaging our societies and families.

It will finally take a collective approach for all of us to win this race. On your part you can contribute by talking to the experts like Dr. Dalal Akoury, Founder of AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center concerning all that may be bothering you concerning these these health conditions. Doctor Akoury and her team of experts are there for you and your friends to ensure you are not just educated but well treated by offering exclusive NER Recovery Treatment to you, your friends, other physicians and health care professionals through training, clinical apprenticeships, webinars and seminars. Remember together we will win and celebrate having chosen to be a part of this truly successful and fast addiction recovery treatment.

Alcoholism and Obesity – Their Relationship