The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition: Primary and secondary malnutrition

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition is realistically here with us, the sooner we approach it soberly the better for everyone.

Malnutrition is an avoidable problem but some of our habits make it very difficult to do so. It is interesting to note that no one would want to be put in the category of malnourished people yet our actions does not really conform with the things that will prevent us from being malnourished. From the previous article, we have just established that alcoholic beverages are only rich in water and ethanol with very negligible patches of come nutrients. I do not know what you do with your life but one thing I do know is that if you are misusing alcohol consistently, then you need to stay on the link and follow keenly on the contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition. Experts at AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center will be sharing with us on some of the things we need to know to be safe from both the problems of alcohol addiction as well as being malnourished out of our thirst for alcohol.

In general doctor Akoury the MD and founder of AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center states that from the observation made in various scientific studies, there are clear evidence that many alcoholics do not consume a balanced diet; moreover, as had been mentioned earlier, excessive alcohol consumption may interfere with these alcoholics’ ability to absorb and use the nutrients they do consume productively. Accordingly, many alcoholics suffer from various degrees of both primary and secondary malnutrition. Primary malnutrition occurs when alcohol replaces other nutrients in the diet, resulting in overall reduced nutrient intake. Secondary malnutrition occurs when the drinker consumes adequate nutrients but alcohol interferes with the absorption of those nutrients from the intestine so they are not available to the body.

The most severe malnutrition, which is accompanied by a significant reduction in muscle mass, generally is found in those alcoholics who are hospitalized for medical complications of alcoholism (e.g., alcohol–related liver disease or other organ damage). If these patients continue to drink, they will lose additional weight; conversely, if they abstain from drinking, they will gain weight. This pattern applies to patients with and without liver disease.

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition: Alcohol’s effects on digestion and absorption of essential nutrients

Alcohol consumption, particularly at heavy drinking levels, not only influences the drinker’s diet but also affects the metabolism of those nutrients that are consumed. Thus, even if the drinker ingests sufficient proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals, deficiencies may develop if those nutrients are not adequately absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract into the blood, are not broken down properly or are not used effectively by the body’s cells. Two classes of nutrients for which such problems occur are proteins and vitamins.

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition: Amino acids and proteins

Proteins are essential components of all cells. They help maintain the cell’s structure, transport certain substances in and out of cells, and act as enzymes that mediate almost all biochemical reactions occurring in the cells. Proteins are composed of approximately 20 different building blocks called amino acids. Many of these amino acids can be produced by the body itself from various precursors or are recycled when proteins that are damaged or are no longer needed are broken down or degraded. Other amino acids however, must be acquired through diet. Alcohol can interfere with the uptake of these essential amino acids.

Patients with chronic liver failure also exhibit a number of defects in protein metabolism. These include decreased production of proteins in the liver that are secreted into the blood decreased urea synthesis, and decreased metabolism of a group of amino acids called aromatic amino acids. These defects have important clinical consequences:

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition: Vitamins

Vitamins are molecules that are present in small amounts in various foods and are essential for normal metabolism; insufficient vitamin levels in the body can lead to serious diseases. Alcoholics, even without liver disease, tend to have clinical or laboratory signs of deficiencies in certain vitamins, particularly vitamins B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B6 (pyridoxine), and C (ascorbic acid), as well as folic acid. The severity of these deficiencies correlates with the amount of alcohol consumed and with the corresponding decrease in vitamin intake.

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition: A person’s nutrition affects liver function

Malnutrition, regardless of its causes, can lead to liver damage and impaired liver function. For example, children in underdeveloped countries whose diets do not contain enough protein can develop a disease called kwashiorkor. One symptom of this disorder is the accumulation of fat in the liver, a condition known as fatty liver. Studies performed during and after World War II indicated that severe malnutrition also could lead to liver injury in adults. However, in these cases other factors, including exposure to certain toxins or parasites that are prevalent in war–ravaged or underdeveloped countries, may have exacerbated the relationship between liver injury and poor nutrition.

Because malnutrition also is common in alcoholics, clinicians initially thought that malnutrition, rather than alcohol itself, was responsible for alcohol–induced liver injury. Over the past 40 years, however, a more balanced view has evolved. Studies in humans, primates, and rodents have established that alcohol can cause liver damage even in well–nourished people.

It is becoming clear that nutritional effects and the toxic effects of alcohol often are intertwined at the biochemical level. For example, alcohol induces the MEOS to break down alcohol. Similarly, alcohol promotes the breakdown of nutrients such as vitamin A, of which alcoholics may already consume too little with their diet. All these addiction related complications can be corrected with the right professional’s involvement. You may want to consult with the experts at AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center under the able leadership of doctor Dalal Akoury. Talking to doctor Akoury should be your starting point and you can do this by scheduling for an appointment with her to day for the commencement of your much desired breakthrough and comfort in life.

The contributions of alcohol addiction to malnutrition: Primary and secondary malnutrition