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Can Alcohol Consumption Shield You From Coronavirus?
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|Can Alcohol Consumption Shield You From Coronavirus? by Kenyans247(1): Thu 19, March, 2020 12:38pm|
Following the outbreak of Coronavirus, the World Health Organisation has since declared the virus a worldwide pandemic, as many countries grapple with the rise in confirmed cases.
As a primary prevention measure to combat further spreading of the Covid-19 virus, WHO advised that all world citizens ensure proper hygiene. Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, confirming Kenya's first case on March 13 advised that members of the public employ alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
This directive has since sparked debate among Kenyans, asking if alcohol consumption would prevent against contracting the deadly microbe, arguing that using alcohol to sanitize one's hands and drinking it would yield the same desired result.The matter escalated to trending online challenges, with members of the public openly consuming alcohol and alleging to be safe from the virus.
Kenyans.co.ke sought to inform the general public on this allegation, based on a report by WHO on effects of alcohol on the human immune system.
According to WHO the Covid-19 virus affects the lungs. The agency further states that the symptoms start off with a fever, then a dry cough which would, in turn, lead to breathing difficulties.
With Coronavirus affecting the lungs, a report by WHO on the effects of alcohol on the lungs and the immunity system gives an indication that alcohol consumption may leave one even more vulnerable to infection by Covid-19.
The report states that individuals who drink on a regular basis are often more likely to catch a cold, flu or any other illness as compared to those who don't indulge. Alcohol weakens the immune system making the body susceptible to infections.
"Alcohol disrupts immune pathways in complex and seemingly paradoxical ways. These disruptions can impair the body’s ability to defend against infection, contribute to organ damage associated with alcohol consumption, and impede recovery from tissue injury," the report states.
WHO declares that alcohol has adverse effects both inactive and adaptive immunity, significantly weakening one's defences. This predisposes chronic drinkers to a wide range of health problems, including infections and systemic inflammation.
WHO further stated that pulmonary diseases, including tuberculosis, respiratory syncytial virus, may result from drinking, arguing that alcohol impairs the function of immune cells, which in turn results in more severe lung diseases.
In this state, one's system would not be able to combat the deadly Covid-19 virus.
According to the organisation, symptoms take on average, five days to show, however, may take longer in some individuals. WHO states that the incubation period may last up to 14 days.
On Thursday, March 19, the government, in a statement seen by Kenyans.co.ke stated that it would manufacture alcohol-based sanitizers and distribute them to the public for free.
This is in line with a prior directive by President Uhuru Kenyatta to curb the spread of the Coronavirus.
On Wednesday, March 18, CS Kagwe announced three more confirmed cases in the country taking the total tally to seven.
Members of the public have been advised to frequently and properly wash their hands with water and soap, avoid touching one's mouths and eyes, as well as drench hands in alcohol-based sanitizers.
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