A study was done involving about 1.3 million British women that provided even additional proof that moderate drinking can raise the risk for a few cancers.
At breast cancer screening clinics, British researchers questioned middle-aged women about their drinking habits and observed their health for seven years.
One-fourth of the women said they did not drink at all. Almost all the others said that they drank less than three drinks a day, and the average had one drink a day. The lightest drinkers were compared with people who drank heavily.
On February 24, University of Oxford researchers reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute that for every extra drink each day, there is an increased risk of breast, rectal and liver cancer. In this study, it did not matter what kind of alcohol was consumed. In earlier research, consuming alcohol was associated with esophageal and oral cancers only when smokers drank.
However, moderate drinkers in reality had a smaller risk of thyroid cancer, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and renal cell cancer. The alcohol risk is minor for the average woman. About 118 out of every 1,000 women form any of these cancers in prosperous countries, but the study found that every added daily alcoholic drink affixed 11 breast cancers and four of the other types to that rate. The researchers deduced that 13 percent of those cancers in Britain can be blamed on alcohol.
So what is safe now? Well, moderate alcohol use has been believed to be heart healthy for a long time, although the new research doesn’t discuss it. This encourages more debate about what levels are safe. It is already established that U.S. health guidelines suggest that women should consume no more than a drink a day; two drinks per day are suggested for men, because they metabolize alcohol differently.
Because of all this, officials have been concerned about giving the wrong message – giving young people, pregnant women and those vulnerable to alcoholism – the green light to drink alcohol. It has been difficult for them to balance the declaration of the benefits of alcohol without influencing people to begin drinking or abusing it.