facebook twitter RSS
HOT TOPICS: Alcoholism  Addiction  AA  Cocaine  Heroin

Booze Blamed for One in 30 Cancer Deaths

Even light drinking can significantly boost cancer risk, a study finds.

Image: 

Even moderate drinking ups cancer risk.
Photo via

By Valerie Tejeda

02/15/13

| Share

Alcohol is responsible for one in every 30 cancer deaths a year in the US, and up to one in six deaths from breast cancer, a new study finds. The research, published in American Journal of Public Health, shows that the correlation between drinking and cancer—long debated by health professionals—is real. "As expected, people who are higher alcohol users were at higher risk, but there was really no safe level of alcohol use," says study author Dr. David Nelson, director of the Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program at the US National Cancer Institute. Even light drinking poses a risk: the study shows 30% of all alcohol-related cancer deaths are linked to 1.5 drinks or less a day. Moderate drinking has been associated with some heart benefits, but Nelson says the risks far outweigh the benefits: “In the broader context of all the issues and all the problems that alcohol is related to, alcohol causes 10 times as many deaths as it prevents.” It is still unknown why alcohol raises cancer risk, but one theory suggests that booze may damage sensitive cells in the body, impeding DNA repair. It may also act as a "solvent," allowing carcinogenic chemicals to enter into cells more easily. Drinking may also affect hormone levels, such as estrogen, which could explain the link to breast cancer. Those who believe they may be at risk for cancer are advised to lower their booze consumption—or better yet, cut it out entirely—says Nelson: "From a cancer prevention perspective, the less you drink, the lower your risk of an alcohol-related cancer and, obviously, if one doesn't drink at all then that's the lowest risk.”

Rehabilitation Directories

Most Popular
Sober Living
Helping My Wife Survive Childhood Sexual Abuse

My wife revealed to me that she had been sexually abused by her stepfather. The process of healing has been difficult, but together we are working towards her recovery.

The Rehab Review
Cliffside Malibu
 
 
 
 

The “beach-house-relaxed” Cliffside Malibu claims to provide an oasis for recovering addicts and alcoholics. And that’s just what you'll get—if you’ve got the cash.

Morningside Recovery
 
 
 
 

For a “rehab near the beach” experience that isn’t quite as costly as similar SoCal competitors, head to this Newport Beach treatment facility.

AToN Center
 
 
 
 

Whether you’re interested in the 12 Steps, SMART Recovery, or holistic treatments, this luxurious, appealing and commendable 4.5 star (our system doesn't yet show the 1/2 star) San Diego rehab has a program for you. 

Reflections
 
 
 
 

This exclusive Northern California rehab is all about client choice—as well as golf outings, Buddhist field trips and keeping up with the office.

Capo By The Sea
 
 
 
 

Capo By The Sea offers an executive rehab program complete with medical detox and a focus on dual-diagnosis issues, as well as an outpatient option in an environment that exudes the kind of beach house optimism one would expect from an Orange County recovery outfit.

Journey Malibu
 
 
 
 

Want many of the luxury amenities A-listers have come to expect—including an enormous backyard with a pool and patio, an herb garden, a volleyball net and a spectacular vista of the Santa Monica mountains—with a recovery program to match?

The Ultimate Guide to Rehab
 
 
 
 
 

What you need to know when choosing an addiction treatment center.

the fix tv