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What is That Alcoholic Drink Doing to Your Kidneys?

By HERWriter
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That Alcoholic Drink: What's It Doing to Your Kidneys? Andy Dean Photography/PhotoSpin

Studies have found that heavy drinking on a regular basis can double the risk for kidney disease, according to the National Kidney Foundation. They caution that having more than three drinks in a day for women, and more than four drinks a day for men, is considered heavy drinking.

Binge drinking can wreak havoc on the kidneys as well. That type of drinking can cause acute kidney injury, also called acute renal failure . This is a sudden drop in kidney function.

People with acute kidney injury may need dialysis until their kidney function returns to normal. Acute kidney injury usually goes away in time, but in some cases, it can causes lasting kidney damage, NKF reports.

It is important to drink in moderation. NKF recommends that men limit their alcohol intake to one to two drinks a day. Women, and anyone over the age of 65, should limit it to one drink a day.


"Alcohol and Your Kidneys." - The National Kidney Foundation. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

Rennie, LPN, S. "Kidneys." Alcohol and Health: Alcohol and Diabetes. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

Lang, Constance. "Effects of Alcohol on Kidneys." EHow. Demand Media, 18 Mar. 2009. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

"Interactive Body Content." Examples of Alcohol's Effect on Organ Function. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

Reviewed March 30, 2015
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.