Alcohol Consumption Seen to ‘Cause’ Breast and 6 Other Cancers, Study Argues

Alcohol Consumption Seen to ‘Cause’ Breast and 6 Other Cancers, Study Argues
The association of alcohol consumption with various forms of cancer risk is not new. According to the U.S. National Cancer Institute, the National Toxicology Program of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services lists consumption of alcoholic drinks as a known human carcinogen. Citing research, the NCI says clear patterns have emerged between drinking alcohol and the development of several types of head and neck cancer, particularly the pharynx (throat) and larynx; liver cancer; breast cancer; and colorectal cancer. Breastcancer.org says research consistently shows that drinking increases a woman's risk of developing hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer, noting that alcohol can increase the levels of estrogen and other hormones associated with that type of cancer, and may also increase breast cancer risk by damaging cell DNA. Compared to women who abstain, those consuming three alcoholic drinks per week have a 15% greater risk of developing breast cancer. The UK independent charity Drinkaware cites its chief medical advisor, Paul Wallace, as noting that alcohol is one of several factors that can increase breast cancer risk. And, according to a 2010 study published in the British Journal of Cancer, about 6% of breast cancer cases in the UK are linked to alcohol consumption. A new study published in the journal Addiction further bolsters evidence. The paper, "Alcohol consumption as a cause of cancer," was written by its lead researcher, Jennie Connor, chair in the Department of Preventive and Social Medicine at the University of Otago in New Zealand. “There is strong evidence that alcohol causes cancer at seven sites in the body and probably others,” Connor wrote. She noted that evidence of a causal role of alcohol in cancer develo
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