How Does the Immune System Work?
The immune system is an important and sophisticated network of cells, tissues, and organs that work together to protect the body from infection. It maintains the body’s ability to fight off infection and disease. It is actually your body’s first line of defense against infection.
How Does Alcohol Affect the Immune System?
The immune system is so vital to maintaining a healthy life and warding off diseases and viruses. Alcohol can severely interrupt this system and all its benefits to the body and mind. The use and misuse of alcohol can affect the immune system in the following ways:
- When you drink alcohol, it prevents your body from producing the white blood cells that help to fight off infection.
- Alcohol decreases the production of antibodies, proteins that help identify and destroy foreign invaders such as bacteria and viruses.
- Alcohol damages the lining of your gut, which makes it easier for bacteria and viruses to enter your body.
- All of these factors can contribute to a weakened immune system and make you more susceptible to developing infections and diseases.
How Can Alcohol Affect COVID-19?
- Because alcohol can weaken your immune system, it makes it easier for you to catch COVID-19.
- If you drink alcohol while infected with COVID-19, you may be more likely to experience severe symptoms and complications.
- Infectious pneumonia is a complication of COVID-19, and alcohol can increase your risk of developing this complication.
- When you drink alcohol, it impairs your ability to fight off infection, making you more susceptible to pneumonia.
- Additionally, alcohol can dehydrate you, making you more prone to pneumonia.
The Dangers of Alcohol
How to Stay Healthy
While there is no healthy level of alcohol to intake, drinking in moderation can reduce such health risks. Has your alcohol consumption become an issue in your life? If so, now is the time to evaluate how it is potentially affecting your health.