Alcohol and blood pressure have quite a few things in common. Consuming too high of an amount of alcohol can increase blood pressure to potentially unhealthy levels. Having a higher amount than three drinks in one sitting can temporarily cause an increase in your blood pressure, but a pattern of binge drinking can have long term increases.
Blood pressure information
When blood is carried throughout your body in vessels called arteries, it creates a pressure on the wall of those vessels. This is what is considered to be your blood pressure. Each time your heart beats, blood is pumped into your body and because of that, it creates more pressure in your arteries. Blood pressure is at its highest when the heart is beating; this is your systolic blood pressure. In between beats of the heart, your blood pressure is lower; this is your diastolic blood pressure. These measurements are in the unit of mmHG (millimeters of Mercury), which is a standard unit of pressure. 120 systolic and 80 diastolic (120 over 80, or 120/80) is considered to be normal blood pressure. When your blood pressure reaches a rate of 140/90, you are considered to have high blood pressure. Alcohol and blood pressure are related in the sense that the more alcohol you consume, the higher your blood pressure will be.
Consequences and warnings of long term binge drinking
Strokes, heart attacks, and other serious consequences can be the effect of binge drinking over a long period of time. What is referred to as “binge drinking” is considered to be anywhere from 5 to 17 drinks weekly. A drink is 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits. A moderate drinker is one of the following: a man under 65 years of age who consumes two drinks per day, a man 65 or over that consumes one drink a day, and one drink a day for a woman of any age. Another factor to consider when speaking in terms of raise in blood pressure due to drinking is that alcohol contains calories, which may lead to unwanted weight gain and in turn, an increase in blood pressure. A heavy drinker, by cutting back to moderate drinking, can lose 2-4 points off of their systolic blood pressure (the number on top of a blood pressure reading) and also, lose 1-2 points of their diastolic blood pressure (the number on bottom of a blood pressure reading). In this sense, alcohol and blood pressure are dangerously related and should be treated so.
Alcohol and blood pressure are dangerous relatives that should be treated accordingly. If you are concerned about your blood pressure and you consume a bit too much alcohol, you may want to talk to your doctor. Talking to a professional about your alcohol consumption and blood pressure problems shouldn’t be embarrassing because it is necessary so that you may stay in good health. The moral of the story is that alcohol will affect your blood pressure, and you should be aware of the effects the combination will have on you.