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Why Do My Joints Hurt After Drinking

by Kristin Beck
Why Do My Joints Hurt After Drinking

Why Do My Joints Hurt After Drinking

“A glass (or two) of wine or beer won’t hurt you. In fact, it may even help loosen tight muscles and joints. The trouble is that alcohol depresses your immune system and suppresses the production of vitamin B1 (aka thiamine), an essential nutrient for healthy nerve function. As a result, when you drink regularly over time, there’s more chance that you’ll develop health problems like heart disease, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s, cancer, diabetes, obesity, stroke and infections. You’re also increasing your risk of suffering from depression, anxiety and insomnia. And if you already have one or more medical conditions, drinking will make them worse.
The Centers For Disease Control (CDC) reports that 2 out of 3 Americans are chronically exposed to harmful amounts of toxins in their homes. These toxic chemicals include pesticides, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and formaldehyde-rich products such as pressed wood furniture, particle board and textiles. They emit fumes and odors that irritate eyes, nose and throat tissues, leading to headaches, allergies and asthma attacks. Breathing the air near cigarettes and candles also causes damage to lung tissue.
And where does all this junk end up? In our food, water supply and medicine cabinet! According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), about 80 percent of prescription drugs contain at least some amount of chemical ingredients, including parabens, benzoyl peroxide, triclosan and dioxins.
In addition, we use so many personal care products with known links to cancer, birth defects and other health risks. Soap and shampoo can strip skin of its natural oils; lipsticks, lotions and nail polish can clog pores and lead to breakouts; hair conditioners and styling aids can give us greasy hair, scalp rashes and follicle irritation. Men who shave daily risk contracting nicks and cuts from razors, while those who wax risk developing ingrown hairs. Even aspirin can be dangerous because of its potential to interfere with blood circulation.
Our bodies are constantly bombarded by environmental toxins, and they accumulate within cells and tissues. Over time, these substances contribute to chronic illness, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis and kidney diseases.
So how can you protect yourself from environmental toxins without giving up fun activities and social occasions? Here are 10 tips to reduce exposure to harmful chemicals and minimize health risks:
Don’t smoke – If you do smoke, quit immediately. Smoking not only increases your chances of getting cancer but also damages connective tissues and reduces flexibility. When you inhale cigarette smoke, nicotine stimulates nerves and makes them overly sensitive to pain. Smokers also suffer higher incidences of infection, especially respiratory ailments.
Use green cleaning agents – Look for non-toxic cleaners specifically designed for home use. Avoid household cleaning products containing harsh acids, solvents, bleach and ammonia. Instead, opt for biodegradable detergents made from vinegar, baking soda or lemon juice. Alternatively, you can purchase pure soap and scrub away dirt and grime using just hot water.
Avoid processed foods – Processed meats, refined flours, white flour and sugar can trigger inflammation, which contributes to bone loss and muscle weakness. Opt for whole grains instead of pastas and breads, and eat lots of fruits and vegetables. Eat fresh salads rather than frozen dinners, and take advantage of seasonal produce available at farmers’ markets and local grocery stores.
Reduce stress – Chronic stress raises cortisol levels, which leads to increased bone breakdown. To manage stress, try breathing exercises, meditation, yoga and exercise. Try to relax by listening to soothing music, reading, playing games and having sex.
Eat plenty of protein – Protein helps build strong bones, cartilage and ligaments. Calcium also plays important roles in building strong teeth and bones. Meat, dairy products and fish provide calcium; nuts, beans and dark leafy greens are good sources of iron.
Drink enough fluids – Water keeps everything moving smoothly inside and outside the body. Drink 8 glasses of water each day to stay hydrated.
Be aware of hidden dangers – Some everyday items can pose serious threats to your health. Check labels on cosmetics, sunscreen and insect repellant before applying them. Choose unscented soaps and shampoos. Use disposable plates, utensils and cups. Don’t share eating utensils and dishes with anyone else. Keep nails short and clean. Wear gloves when gardening and keep pesticide bottles closed when not in use.
Get regular checkups – Consult your doctor about any new health issues, especially joint pains. He or she can recommend appropriate treatments based on your age, gender, lifestyle and general physical condition. Ask questions and get informed about preventive measures you can take to avoid future flare-ups.
Limit alcoholic beverages – Consuming large quantities of alcohol can raise estrogen levels and put women at greater risk of breast cancer. Heavy drinkers also experience weight gain and liver damage. Limit your intake of red wine and spirits, particularly during pregnancy.
Take supplements – Vitamins A, C and E can boost collagen production, which improves joint mobility and strength. Omega-3 fatty acids, found naturally in salmon, walnuts and avocado, promote healthy skin and joints. Vitamin D supports strong bones and promotes calcium absorption. Supplementation doesn’t replace balanced diets rich in vitamins and minerals, but it provides extra support when needed.
If you suspect that your joint pain could be due to environmental factors, consult a physician. He or she will probably refer you to a specialist who has expertise in treating inflammatory conditions. Before starting treatment, ask your healthcare provider what side effects to expect and whether he or she recommends similar medications.
Remember that every person reacts differently to environmental toxins. While some people suffer no ill effects, others may develop symptoms ranging from headache, fatigue, nausea, stomachaches to more severe complications like seizures, paralysis, memory loss, eye disorders and cancer. Always follow directions carefully and seek immediate medical attention if necessary.”

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