Heavy drinking hurts lungs: Study

Heavy drinking hurts lungs: StudyA new study suggests that heavy drinking can also increase the risk of lung problems. The negative impact of heavy drinking on liver is well known, but according to the new study, the lungs may be affected as well.

Study lead author Dr. Majid Afshar said, “Alcohol appears to disrupt the healthy balance in the lung.”


The researchers analyzed data from over 12,000 American adults and found that heavy drinkers and binge-drinkers (those who binge-drank at least once a month) had less nitric oxide in their exhale, compared to non-drinkers.

Heavy drinking was defined as more than one drink for women and more than two drinks for men daily. Binge-drinking was defined as more than four drinks for women and more than five drinks for men per occasion.
Researchers also found the more heavy drinkers drank, the lower their nitric oxide levels were.

Nitric oxide provides protective properties for the lungs against specific bacteria. This is the first study to show a link between excessive alcohol consumption and lung health. Dr. Afshar added, “Lung doctors may need to take this into consideration.”

Also, read Bel Marra Health’s article: Excessive alcohol consumption affects eyesight and vision.

Author Bio

Mohan Garikiparithi got his degree in medicine from Osmania University (University of Health Sciences). He practiced clinical medicine for over a decade before he shifted his focus to the field of health communications. During his active practice he served as the head of the Dept. of Microbiology in a diagnostic centre in India. On a three-year communications program in Germany, Mohan developed a keen interest in German Medicine (Homoeopathy), and other alternative systems of medicine. He now advocates treating different medical conditions without the use of traditional drugs. An ardent squash player, Mohan believes in the importance of fitness and wellness.