Jun 19, 2003
I'm hiv+. Do smoking and drinking alcohol affect greatly?
Response from Mr. Vergel
Yes. Smoking increases the risks of heart disease. Over 50% of people with HIV have high LDL (bad) cholesterol , low HDL (good) cholesterol, and high triglycerides. Smoking when you have high lipids is asking for big trouble. Smoking has also been linked to a higher incidence of avascular necrosis, or death of bone tissue in the joints. There are also some studies that link smoking to reduced immune function. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about the nicotine patches, Ziaban (a prescription drug that helps decrease the cravings),and counseling. Also, exercise may help manage the anxiety of not being able to smoke when you want to!
Alcohol can increase insulin resistance, tax the liver (which is already working over time with HIV drugs), affect the pancreas, and increase visceral fat (around your waist) Alcohol in moderation (no more than two drinks a day) can show some benefits in increasing the good kind of cholesterol (HDL)
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