Single Bout of Binge Drinking Linked to Immune System Effects
The hazards of a leaky gut. Biology for $1000, Alex: An integral part of the cell walls of Gram-negative bacteria, these toxic compounds can trigger inflammation and other immunological responses after a single episode of heavy drinking. Answer: What are endotoxins? The outer membranes of gram-negative bacteria contain toxic elements known as endotoxins, or lipopolysaccharides. An endotoxin is released when a bacterial cell wall is breached, allowing virulent proteins to enter the bloodstream. When endotoxins engage with the immune system, the result is inflammation—a necessary part of healing, yet potentially damaging to surrounding cells and tissue. When you come down with a cold, those aches and pains come are caused by your immune system inducing inflammation to fight the virus. Chronic inflammation is not a good thing. Higher levels of circulating endotoxins have been linked to numerous health issues. Binge drinking: Almost everybody does it now and then, and some drinkers do it every day. So what is binge drinking, anyway? The NIAAA defines it as a drinking pattern that results in a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or above. This means about four drinks for women and five for men over a period of about two hours. “In chronic alcohol use activation of the inflammatory cascade is a major component of organ damage in the brain and liver,” according to researchers at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. “Alcohol binge can cause altered immune functions t...
Source: Addiction Inbox - Category: Addiction Authors: Dirk Hanson Source Type: blogs
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