Page:Alcohol, a Dangerous and Unnecessary Medicine.djvu/82

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ALCOHOL AS A MEDICINE.

"It has been found by experiment that, when alcohol is taken, less carbonic acid comes away in the breath than when it is not. This is partly because the blood-corpuscles cannot carry so much, and partly because so much is not produced, because there is less oxygen to join with the food and produce it. Just as burning paper smokes when it does not get enough oxygen, so other things are formed and get into the blood when there is not enough oxygen to make carbonic acid. These things make the blood impure, and cause extra work and trouble to get rid of them. This is why persons who drink alcohol are more liable to have gout and other diseases, than total abstainers."

Dr. Alfred Carpenter, formerly president of the Council of the British Medical Association, says in Alcoholic Drinks:—

"A blood corpuscle cannot come into direct contact with an atom of alcohol, without the function of the former being spoiled, and not only is it spoiled, but the effete matter which it has within its capsule cannot be exchanged for the necessary oxygen. The breath of the drunken man does not give out the quantity of carbonic acid which that of the healthy man does, and the ammoniacal compounds are in a great measure absent. Some of the carbon and effete nitrogenous matter is kept back. The retention of these poisonous matters within the body is highly injurious. Let the drinker suffer from any wound or injury and this effete matter in his blood is ready at a moment's notice to prepare and set up actions called inflammatory or erysipelatous, or some other kind; by means of which too often the drinker is hurried into eternity, although, perhaps, he may have been regarded as a perfectly sober man, and have never been drunk in his life."

In the light of these scientific facts, what can appear more utterly foolish than the swallowing of