Women & Alcohol
Why is our Body Unique?
Well, many reasons, but with alcohol there are 3 reasons in particular:
1. We have a menstrual cycle: Most of us know that when you are on your period, you are more prone to tiredness and can be grouchy. Our body is already run down and our hormones are in flux. When adding alcohol to the mix, expecially the week before our period, it makes our symptoms worse and our body is too tired to fight off the poison of alcohol, therefore we become more impaired, more quickly. Also, if you take birth control or medication with estrogen, it can cause alcohol to be processed and eliminated at a slower rate than normal.
2. We have more body fat: I hate to say that, and it isn't fair, but it is a fact of life. There are more fatty parts on the body of a woman naturally, which is due to our child bearing ability. Men have more muscle, which is mostly water, and in effect can buffer some of the alcohol ingested. With women, yes we have muscle, but we naturally have more fat. Our body water content is approximatly 52% to a man's 61%. Fat stores alcohol which causes us to be impaired longer.
3. Alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH): This is a group of enzymes that helps to break down alcohol in the body. There is not as much dehydrogenase in women as there is in men, so it takes us longer to break down alcohol and we do it less efficiently, therefore we are more impaired by alcohol than men.