Alcohol Protects Against Coronavirus!
Or, is this simply too good to be True?
Well, here is a great example that you can’t always believe what you see, hear or read! While it makes a great headline that alcohol can protect against Coronavirus – this is not true! In fact, it is far from the truth, and research has proven that drinking too much can actually weaken our immune system and increase our vulnerability to COVID-19. Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) released a statement warning everyone that “Alcohol does not protect against COVID-19”.
Alcohol does not protect against coronavirus!
In case you have been mislead by some of the mis-information about drinking, the WHO went on to explain:
“Alcohol consumption is associated with a range of communicable and noncommunicable diseases and mental health disorders”. Now that is not good news, no matter whether we have a pandemic out there or not! But the reason for the seriousness of the situation is because alcohol compromises the body’s immune system. When the immune system is run down, we are actually more susceptible to catching diseases and having poor health outcomes. The summary from WHO is that people should reduce their alcohol consumption at any time, and especially when contagious diseases are a threat.
WHO recommends that everyone reduce alcohol consumption
There is no need for me to say that this is sobering information, and is consistent with medical advice for some time now!
I suppose the mis-information comes about because strong ethanol (which is the concentrated version of the alcohol in beverages) can actually be used as antiseptic. In fact, when it comes to laboratory cleaning, pure alcohol is one of the best ways to kill all types of germs and contamination. But this should not be comforting information, because that means that alcohol is a toxic and poisonous substance. If it is good for killing amoeba, then it cannot be much good for humans either!
Can alcohol kill germs?
Yes, it is true that pure forms of alcohol can kill germs and pathogens. However, when it comes to Corona virus, or any other virus for that matter, there is no way that a few glasses of your favourite beverage are going to save you from a pandemic. Most types of influenza are transmitted from one person to another via the mucus membranes, and will do so despite how many drinks the host may have consumed. Once the virus has taken hold within the host’s blood system, there is no way that consumed alcohol can prevent the illness, especially after transmission has occurred.
Can drinking help spread the virus?
And yet there is another risk to drinking alcohol, during the risk of a pandemic. Because drinking is largely a social activity, then there is potential for transmission of illness. No matter how careful we may be in social gatherings, there is always an increased risk of transmission when we are in close proximity to large numbers of people. It would be quite difficult to imagine how social distancing would work effectively in a bar situation, particularly towards the end of a typical evening! In case you hadn’t noticed, the widespread lockdown of social gatherings, restaurants and bars has been responsible for the reduction in the spread of coronavirus. Without a doubt, the imposition of social isolation should be acknowledged as successful in preventing the pandemic from causing widespread chaos.
Alcohol does not protect against coronavirus
So despite the fanciful belief that alcohol protects against coronavirus, this is simply not the truth. In fact the opposite is true, because drinking too much alcohol only serves to weaken the immune system and make us more vulnerable to catching the disease. So during any time of high risk of catching an illness or disease, there is medical evidence that we should cut back on the amount of alcohol that we consume. The immediate benefit from cutting back on drinking is to optimise the function of the immune system.
Cutting back on drinking is good for all of us
The longer term benefit comes about when we manage to avoid some of these illnesses, or at least our body is able to fight against the worst symptoms. I don’t know about you, but I know that I do not like to catch each and every cold and flu, cough and sneeze that goes around. Even if we can avoid just one of these nasty bugs, then that has got to be a good thing!
Cut back on drinking for good health!
Let us raise a glass to good health! But seriously, if you are concerned about maintaining good health, there is much to be gained from changing the way we think about drinking. By simply cutting back on drinking, we can improve our immune system response, and avoid catching illnesses. But even better, we can protect ourselves from the toxic effects of alcohol in the body, and avoid long term damage.
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