MAYWOOD,Il. — Before hitting the bottle too hard New Years Eve in celebration of the new year, there’s another reason to not binge drink — it’s bad for the immune system.



Binge drinking in young, healthy adults significantly disrupts the immune system, according to a study led by a researcher at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine.



Depending on their weight, study participants drank four or five shots of vodka. Twenty minutes after reaching peak intoxication, their immune systems revved up. But when measured again, at two hours and five hours after peak intoxication, their immune systems had become less active than when sober.



The study by Majid Afshar, M.D.andcolleaguesis publishedonline in Alcohol, an international, peer-reviewed journal.



Binge drinking increases the risk of falls, burns, gunshot wounds, car accidents and other traumatic injuries. One-third of trauma patients have alcohol in their systems.



In addition to increasing the risk of traumatic injuries, binge drinking impairs the body’s ability to recover from such injuries.



The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism defines binge drinking as drinking enough to reach or exceed a blood alcohol content of.08, the legal limit for driving. This typically occurs after four drinks for women or five drinks for men, consumed in two hours. One in six U.S.adultsbinge drinks about four times a month, and binge drinking is more common in young adults aged 18 to 34, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



The study included eight women and sevenmen witha median age of 27.