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How Long Does it Take for the Liver to Recover After Quitting Alcohol?

by | Stop Drinking Alcohol | 10 comments

“The trouble with life isn’t that there is no answer, it’s that there are so many answers”
Ruth Benedict

Today is a short answer to a long question is: How long does the liver take to recover once you’ve stop drinking?

I’m Kevin O’Hara for alcoholmastery.com and the question today is: How long does the liver take to recover once you’ve stop drinking?

I have a favourite saying which is, “how long is a piece of string?” It really does apply here a lot.

How long the liver takes to heal, all depends on how much you’ve been drinking.

How much you’ve been drinking every day, how much you drank in the past, how long you’ve been drinking for, whether you’re a male or female.

The person who sent me this email was a female.

Obviously it takes a lot less alcohol for damage to occur in a female’s body, than it does a female’s liver, than it does to a male liver right?

There’s a lot of different factors to take into account.

I can’t really give you a definitive answer, it’s a medical problem.

Really, if you’re looking for reassurance then the only person that can really give you that reassurance is your doctor, it’s a medical condition.

The first place you should go if you’re worried about your liver is down to you doctor and they can tell you about damage, they can tell you about medication or what kind of treatment that you can get if your liver is damaged.

They can examine you and know the extent of the damage.

Also, I think there’s a lot of things that you can do to improve your own liver.

The main thing is to quit drinking.

Once you still drink, it’s a moot-point whether or not there’s damage to your liver, because the damage is going to keep accumulating.

I think that whenever you’re binge drinking, there is inevitably a certain amount of damage to your body in general.

Because your liver can only metabolize a certain amount of alcohol per hour, let’s go with the one unit – whatever that means, it’s a small amount of alcohol that your body is capable of getting rid of.

So that’s the first thing – is to

stop the drinking.

Number two is, if you give your body the tools that it needs – in terms of…

nutrition, good exercise, plenty of sleep, plenty of water

…then you’re also giving your body a boost up.

You’re giving it the tools that it needs to do a better job of returning your liver back to normal.

Like I said, I’ve talked about this on many of occasions in the past, I haven’t really done much in terms of going to the doctor.

I figured well, I’ve changed my lifestyle and all of the stuff that I can do for my liver – I’m doing.

I’ve changed my lifestyle, I’ve changed what I put into my body, the food, I’ve stopped drinking obviously.

I drink a lot of water to flush out the different toxins that I’m taking into my body.

But I’ve also reduced that amount of toxins to as much as I can.

I’m not really – try not to take – I’m thinking about it all the time, I’m thinking about whether this is going to be bad for me.

I mean I don’t drink soft drinks anymore, not only because of the sugar content but you don’t know what the hell these companies are putting into this stuff.

When you can put a two penny coin or a nickel or whatever it is – wherever you live, into a Coke and see the damage that it does or what it does to the coin, it actually cleans it up, but imagine the damage that that’s causing inside your body.

So if you’re worried about your liver at all, get down to your doctor.


it’s a medical condition

and there’s no other place that you can get this dealt with.

I can’t talk about it either from a medical perspective or from a perspective of somebody who’s been down to the doctor with a liver complaint, because I didn’t.

I’m not a person that goes to the doctor regularly.

I think the last time I’ve been to the doctor was a long time ago and I had chest pains which turned out was just a problem with my stomach.

It was bad acid, a recurring thing, it was caused by the alcohol and the bad diet and all that kind of stuff.

I went to the doctor, sat in his office – told him what I was getting.

He had a worried look on his face, took blood pressure, all this stuff then sent me to hospital.

I ended up in hospital overnight with a bunch of old fellas who were basically dying.

They were really old, they were on the last legs, and it scared the shit out of me.

That was one of my first run-ins from a medical perspective.

The nurse actually came out to me and said, patted my stomach and says, “Well, how is that?”

The doctor actually did it as well, a lot of people were concerned about my belly.

She turned around to me and said, “How many pints do you drink?” and I said, “Ah two or three.”

She says, “Bollocks, if you drink more than that don’t be lying to me now, you know.”

I said “Ok, maybe like six or seven.”

She says, “That’s more like it. You know, your body is not meant to do that.” and she gave me a right scolding.

But, yeah the doctor obviously came around to the bed the next morning, said that it was grand I could go home.

Patted me on the stomach and he says…

“Get rid of that.”

I’m still trying but it’s still there.

Anyway, the best thing I can advise anyone who’s worried about the liver is to go down to the doctor straight away.

Just from that perspective of stopping yourself, giving yourself some peace of mind.

It is a worrying thing, I remember getting pains in my stomach, pains in my side.

Reading up about it and convincing myself that there was nothing wrong because I read that you don’t actually get pains from liver problems.

No, I don’t know where I was reading that or what I was reading.

But it’s not true, in some cases you do – in some cases you don’t.

From what I know it’s just swelling, it’s when your liver starts to swell up that you get pains and it’s from the side.

Something like that but anyway, I’m not a doctor so you need to go to see your doctor.

So if you have any questions at all, leave a comment down below.

Give us a thumbs up if you like the video.

Life is like a piano. What you get out of it depends on how you play it
Tom Lehrer

Until next time…
Onwards and Upwards!

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  1. ron

    Good Vid Kev i agree with you about cola its killed loads of people in many countries its basically all sugar even the the so called diet cola shit also all the other drinks are sterilised and have all kionds of preservatives in them even so called pure orange juice has been through many processes to keep it so called fresh . ill stick to my juicer and bollox to all that processed shit Onwards and Upwards

    • Kevin O'Hara

      The best orange juice is the one you squeeze yourself – or watch someone else squeeze. Thanks Ron

  2. Teren

    More good thoughts. After 90 days without, I have no pain or discomfort in my liver region. I like your no nonsense approach. I really enjoy your upbeat message about the good in life returning when you stop using alcohol. Keep up the great work.

    • Kevin O'Hara

      Thanks Teren.

  3. Julie D.

    Good video, again, Kevin–thanks!

    About the Coca Cola (I think most of you may know this),but when the battery terminals in your car or truck are gummed up with that yellow acid, you pour Coke on them & they become clean immediately. This is kind of scary. Most processed foods have no vitamin content, you are right. It is so important to eat right, I guess, maybe that is why I’m still here. Thanks for everything. Julie

    • Kevin O'Hara

      Agreement here. I think the nutrition is one of the most beneficial habits to build in your life. Remove as much crap and replace it with good quality. Thanks Julie

  4. Stephen

    Interesting one about the liver. Onwards & Upwards

  5. Carrie

    So my spouse has a history of alcohol treatment (his family and he kept hidden) after his retirement he began drinking extremely heavy and became violent, he attended murdering myself and my child but the attempt failed ??, he has been in jail 2 months now last I saw him in court (protection order hearing) his color was awful!!
    I love the man I thought I married but he’s obviously gone and my child’s protection is all I can focus on now. Anyway he was admitted from the jail to the hospital with liver issues I’m told?? How does the liver react after quitting cold turkey 2 months ago from alcohol/ 6 pk or more A day/ xanex/ adderall, and Prozac all being consumed with the in massive amounts as I’ve found out since the attempt on our life.

    Anyone have an educated guess what could be going on medically for a once amazing human being before all this???

    Concerned wife

    • Joe

      Youre a mess

  6. Pm

    Just thought I’d add my experience so far,
    I had an elevated liver and quit drinking, it took six months
    Before my liver was back to normal level.
    I started drinking more heavily not all at once, and my hair is falling out and my head felt weird and burned every once in a while but just did not feel normal. I’m also menopausal now and hormones are all over the place. I quit again 2 months ago hoping my hair comes back. My head feels way better.
    But for me it took 6 months.


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