Alcohol-related liver disease (ARLD) is caused by damage to the liver from years of excessive drinking. Years of alcohol abuse can cause the liver to become inflamed and swollen. This damage can also cause scarring known as cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is the final stage of liver disease.
A global study has found out that alcohol consumption in India has risen by 55% over a period of 20 years. More worryingly, the young are getting initiated to alcohol much earlier, while more women are indulging in hazardous and binge drinking.
Liver disease is just one of the consequences of excessive alcohol consumption. This is especially serious because liver failure can be fatal. Learn how you can prevent and treat this serious condition.
Types and Symptoms of Alcohol-Related Liver Disease
The symptoms of ARLD depend on the stage of the disease. There are three stages:
- Alcoholic fatty liver disease: This is the least severe of the stages of ARLD, where fat starts to accumulate around the liver. It can be cured by not drinking alcohol anymore.
- Acute alcoholic hepatitis: Alcohol abuse causes inflammation (swelling) of the liver in this stage. The outcome depends on the severity of damage. In some cases, treatment can reverse the damage, while more severe cases of alcoholic hepatitis can lead to liver failure.
- Alcoholic cirrhosis: This is the most severe form of ARLD. At this point, the liver is scarred (cirrhosis) from alcohol abuse, which cannot be undone. Cirrhosis can lead to liver failure. Some people with ARLD don’t have symptoms until the disease is advanced. Others start showing signs earlier. Symptoms of
- loss of appetite
- abdominal discomfort
- increased thirst
- swelling in the legs and abdomen
- weight loss
- darkening or lightening of the skin
- red hands or feet
- dark bowel movements
- unusual agitation
- mood swings
- bleeding gums
- enlarged breasts (in men)
Symptoms of ARLD may show up more often after binge drinking.
Risk Factors for Alcohol-Related Liver Disease
Your risk of ARLD increases if:
- you have a family history of ARLD
- you often drink heavily
- you binge drink
- you have poor nutrition
Binge drinking may also cause acute alcoholic hepatitis. This can be life-threatening. Acute alcoholic hepatitis can develop after as few as four drinks for women and five drinks for men.
Diagnosing Alcohol-Related Liver Disease
ARLD is not the only disease that can cause liver damage. Your doctor will want to test the health of your liver to rule out other diseases. Your doctor may order:
- complete blood count (CBC)
- liver biopsy
- liver function test
- abdominal computed tomography (CT) scan
- abdominal ultrasound
Ayurveda Theory of Addiction
Ayurveda experts believe that people become addicted to alcohol and drugs because they are attempting to escape imbalances and inner tension caused by stress. The intoxicating effects of these substances fool the individual into believing that they are being helped, but they are actually creating further imbalances in the body. The aim of Ayurveda then is to fix all the imbalances that have been created and provide the individual with the ability to deal better with stress. This can be done because most of the emotional stress that people experience is due to reacting badly to external stimuli and this creates internal tension. If the individual can learn to remove their blocks to stress, so they can stop resisting it, the need to abuse alcohol or drugs will fall away. But before this can happen they will need to detoxify the body and fix all imbalances.
Ayurveda can offer a number of treatments that may be of value for people recovering from an addiction including:
- The regular practice of yoga postures can improve health and help people deal better with stress. According to Ayurveda medicine itwill also restore energetic balance in the body and provide deep purification following the cessation of alcohol and drug abuse.
- Most addicts suffer from nutritional deficiencies so following an Ayurveda diet may help with this. It is advisable that people check anychanges they make to their diet with a qualified dietician – this is particularly important in the early recovery.
- Meditation is a wonderful tool for people recovering from an addiction. It not only helps them better deal with stress, but it can alsoincrease their ability to manage the stressors that occur in their life.
- The lifestyle changes advised by this form of medical treatment are usually sensible and therefore can be of benefit to people in recovery.
- Those who are already established in recovery from addiction may find that Ayurveda helps them maintain good physical, mental, and spiritual health.
Natural remedy to suppress craving for alcohol:
1. Natural home remedy using carom seeds
- Take 500 g of carom seeds
- Add them to 8 L of water
- Boil the mixture till about 2 L water is left
- Filter the mixture
- Drink 3-4 tbsp whenever you get a craving for alcohol
2. Natural home remedy using apple juice
Drink 2 glasses of apple juice everyday to reduce the craving .These remedies are based on the principles of Ayurveda, the ancient Indian science of healing, and are completely natural, non-invasive, and can be prepared at home. Herbalage Wellness India has prepared certain combination of herbs which helps in liver damage due to alcohol toxicity. It helps rejuvenate the liver.
Liver, kidneys & prostate care and Detoxification support.
A well researched formulation to help detoxify whole body by improving the functions of liver, kidneys and urinary tract. It also supports to regulate metabolism to help in obesity.
- Helps rejuvenates fatty and sluggish liver to ignite detoxification.
- Provides nutrition in urinary tract infection, renal failure, and liver apses etc.
- Helps protect from drug, pollution and alcohol borne toxicity.
- Also helps address kidney stone.
Liver & detoxification management.
Key ingredients & their benefits:
- Pittapapad, Bhringraaj & Guduchi Helps rejuvenates fatty and sluggish liver cells and ignite detoxification.
- Kalmegh helps activate antioxidant enzymes that catalyze the reaction of oxidants and are effective in severe liver damage.
- Neruri & Punarnava improves urinary tracts and helps detoxify overall body. They also Helps protect from drug, pollution and alcohol borne toxicity.