Tuesday, 21 November, 2017

Alcohol consumption increases risk of seven types of cancer, claim doctors

ASCO: Alcohol Linked to Several Types of Cancer Report: Most unaware of link between alcohol, cancer
Jerome Frank | 09 November, 2017, 01:20

This quote comes from Dr. Noelle LoConte, an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison who is the lead author of a statement recently put together by the American Society of Clinical Oncology in the Journal of Clinical Oncology about the ties between alcohol and the risks of cancer.

Yet few adults, when asked, identify alcohol consumption as a risk factor for cancer, even though the vast majority were familiar with other cancer risk factors, like smoking and sun exposure, a recent ASCO survey of 4,016 adults found. If you don't drink, don't start.

Alcohol is directly responsible for 5 to 6 percent of new cancers and cancer deaths worldwide, according to the statement. Breast and colon cancers are among the biggest cancer-related killers in the country, claiming almost 95,000 American lives each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Alcohol use at any level is associated with higher risks for several leading cancers, including those of the head and neck, esophagus, colon, and breast, according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology. While it is okay to drink occasionally (read rarely), you shouldn't be making a habit out of it.

The more alcohol you drink, the more likely you are to develop at least seven types of cancer, oncologists warned in a statement released yesterday. The study's authors said their findings indicated "a public health crisis", especially with the increase in problem drinking among its more than 43,000 participants.

"The message is not, 'Don't drink.' It's, 'If you want to reduce your cancer risk, drink less". "It's different than tobacco where we say, 'Never smoke".

Since then, she said, more and more evidence has accumulated tying alcohol to a broader group of cancers, including colorectal cancer and, in women, breast cancer. "We don't have randomized trials, but sometimes when you start looking at the coherence of all the evidence, including the observational epidemiology, the lab studies, the mechanistic studies, you begin to see a picture and get more clarity".

ABC News' chief medical correspondent, Dr. Jennifer Ashton, said that alcohol has been a known human carcinogen, or known to cause cancer, for a long time within the medical community.

Heavy alcohol use could increase the risk of cancer, pictured is a customer drinking an IPA beer at a brewery February 7, 2014 in Santa Rosa, California.

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