When you drink alcohol it can alter the ability for your kidneys to function, which then has a flow-on effect to other organs in your body.
Loss of electrolytes can cause problems with your heart, impacting on every organ in your body.
Your kidneys filter waste and toxins from your blood, regulate your blood volume and pressure, and are responsible for normalising your blood’s electrolyte levels and pH. Drinking alcohol can affect the kidney’s ability to filter blood, meaning that the balance of electrolytes and water in the body is upset.
What’s more, because alcohol depresses the nervous system, it can decrease a person’s breathing if they consume too much, leading to a build up of acid in the blood.
Long-term misuse can cause cell damage and enlargement of the kidneys and may impact on the hormones that control kidney function. Complications are even greater if alcohol misuse leads to liver damage.
For more information about the effects of alcohol on your body, check out our interactive tool.