Binge Drinking And Liver Disease
It may sound shocking to hear, but alcohol-related liver disease is on the rise among younger people across the U.S. Though issues like cirrhosis have always been linked to beer and wine consumption, it usually took years, or even decades, before they would cost someone their life. Now, however, it appears as though binge drinking is fueling this problem at a much faster rate.
The latest research comes from a study published by JAMA, which was recently highlighted by NBC News. In an article on their site, the network pointed to the alarming data released by the research org. They also interviewed several experts in the field, who have firsthand knowledge of this new epidemic.
Dr. Elliot Tapper, for example, is a liver disease specialist and assistant professor at the University of Michigan. Speaking with NBC, he emphasized the growing number of young people suffering from this chronic illness.
“It is clear that there are many more sick livers out there due to alcohol,” Dr. Tapper told the site. “If you were to come with me on my rounds in the hospital you’d see that in every other room there is a 28-year-old or a 30-year-old with severe liver disease. There have been studies in the last few years that suggest that amongst millennials about 40 percent will report binge drinking in the past month. That means it’s basically become a part of the culture for the American millennial. There’s no historical precedent for that.”
Dr. Tapper added that heavy alcohol consumption in one sitting (aka binge drinking) actually does more damage to the liver than smaller dosages on a daily basis. So if someone were to take in 14 drinks during a night of partying, they’d actually be doing more damage than a person drinking twice a day for an entire month.
In truth, alcohol-related liver disease is one of the leading causes of death within the U.S. Currently, it claims nearly 300,000 lives each year. It’s also the number one reason for liver transplants across the country.
This new research is bringing many more millennials into that statistic. It also called out women, pointing to the fact that many females in their 30s and 40s are dying because of this disease.
So let it be known that sudden bursts of drinking can cause just as much damage (if not more) as a long term problem. If you or someone you are close to is dealing with an issue like, please reach out and get help.