Effects of alcohol– The consumption of alcoholic beverages is well accepted in most countries of the world. As the rates of couples who struggle to achieve pregnancy increase, we have to ask ourselves how our lifestyle habits influence. Taking a drink once in a while is something that is part of our lifestyle, along with the type of food or sports. But just as in other less healthy habits, such as tobacco, it can have an impact on our fertility.
The health effects of excessive alcohol consumption are well known. What is considered a responsible consumption for the general population? According to the World Health Organization, the optimal consumption of alcohol is one glass of wine per day, in the case of men, and half in women. “The effects of alcohol on fertility are greater than one might think, because even moderate alcohol consumption can reduce fertility.
The more alcohol, the lower the fertility
In the case of those women who are looking for pregnancy, what is the recommended amount of alcohol? Is there any limitation? While the message given to couples seeking pregnancy is that they should avoid drinking alcohol while trying to conceive, we must know that women who consume more than 5 alcoholic drinks a week take longer to get pregnant. Women who drink less per week have greater fertility. These data have been revealed by a study from Southern Denmark University that reveals how alcohol can decrease our ability to conceive.
The study involved 1,221 men between 18 and 28 years of age, of whom they analyzed: how they consumed alcohol, the quality of semen and the hormonal profile.
The results show that the concentration of semen and the number of sperm decrease while the consumption of alcoholic beverages increases. Along with the number of cups, the number of sperm also decreases.
This is reflected with consumption as moderate as 5 units of alcohol per week (1 unit is equivalent to a beer or a glass of wine, 2 units is equivalent to 1 vodka or whiskey or cognac). After 25 units per week, the modifications are seen and with a consumption of 40 units per week, the sperm concentration is reduced by 33%.
Alcohol and conception: the farther, the better
The results of the study are clear, alcoholic beverages should be avoided while you are looking for pregnancy. If you have difficulty conceiving and you are wondering if drinking alcoholic beverages may be contributing to your problems, it may be time to stop drinking. Leaving alcohol will increase your fertility in general.
Men who want to support their partners in the search for pregnancy should also avoid alcohol while trying to conceive. Couples who are going to start an Assisted Reproduction treatment should stop drinking alcohol, at least 3-6 months before any procedure.
For any questions or queries related to this or other related issues, do not hesitate to contact the CIRH medical team, we will be happy to help.
Oxytocin vs. drunkenness
The researchers analyzed the behavior of oxytocin or love hormone in a group of rats that had been fed alcohol. “While the rodents that received doses of alcohol and oxytocin passed the drunkenness test with great success, those who received alcohol without a love hormone deteriorated seriously,” explains Michael Bowen, lead author of the study.
Thus, the researchers discovered that oxytocin prevents alcohol from getting into areas of the brain that trigger drunken behavior.
The new findings published in the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveal that if the brain receives an extra load of oxytocin before consuming alcohol, the symptoms of drunkenness it produces in the body could be avoided.
Stunned and overwhelmed: the feeling of drunkenness
As Bowen explains, alcohol affects coordination by inhibiting the activity of regions of the brain that provide motor control. Hence, the sensation of drunkenness causes us to feel dizzy, dizzy and, in some way, to synthesize it, slowing down the space surrounding time.
Thanks to oxytocin, this effect can be avoided in the body. The researchers speak of “a truly remarkable effect to the point that we can say that the rats were not really drunk.
The effect of oxytocin prevents alcohol access to the parts of the brain that cause us to behave with the traditional symptoms of drunkenness, but does not make the alcohol ingested disappear or leave our body faster.
The rodents showed no symptoms of drunkenness but that does not mean that they were not drunk. The hormone of love can reduce your level of intoxication but in reality it will not change the level of alcohol in the blood, adds the also professor at the University of Sydney School of Psychology.
Researchers insist that the moderating effect of oxytocin alcohol has not yet been tested in humans, they are already considering applying these findings in future studies.
The first step will be to ensure that we have a method of administering drugs for human beings that will allow sufficient amounts of oxytocin to reach the brain. Scientists hope that, in the future, these discoveries could be used for effective treatments against alcohol addiction.
However, it is not a solution to the consumption of alcoholic beverages. By not eliminating the presence of alcohol in blood would not serve, for example, to drive a vehicle because, although the symptoms of drunkenness are not present, the body would test positive for blood alcohol.
Finally, although drinking is a very accepted social behavior, we must not forget that alcohol is a poison that affects both our organs and our mental state producing the sensation known as being drunk: euphoria and excitement, loss of reflexes and sensation of confusion that makes us find ourselves in a state similar to that of someone hypnotized.
Whether you are trying to have a full stomach so that alcohol affects you less , you try to mix to keep hydrated by inserting other types of drinks -care because you may not know that if the drink has gas absorbed at a higher rate-, or even if Do not hesitate to use the ultimate trick to drink a lot and do not get drunk discovered by the founder of the Boston Beer Company, you will be interested to know that science seems to have found the solution to avoid the feeling of drunkenness.
No cold showers, no coffee with salt or a cocktail of vitamin B before bedtime. A study by the University of Sydney and Regensburg, Germany, has discovered the solution to reduce the effects of alcohol on the body and restore the feeling of sobriety. And it has a name as beautiful as the hormone of love.