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Cancer Doctors Cite Risks of Drinking Alcohol 

Alcohol increases the risk of certain cancers.

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. Fewer than one in three adults identified alcohol as a risk factor for cancer. (Most also failed to mention obesity as a risk factor.)

The doctors’ group is also calling for new public health initiatives to curb alcohol use, from taxes to restrictions on ads targeting minors, like the new ban on alcohol advertising on New York City’s subways and buses slated to go into effect in January. The group likewise opposes “pink washing,” in which alcohol companies drape their products in pink ribbon to enhance sales, a practice it opposes “given the consistent evidence that shows the link between alcohol consumption and an increased risk of breast cancer.”

For the statement, ASCO researchers reviewed earlier published studies and concluded that 5.5 percent of all new cancers and 5.8 percent of all cancer deaths worldwide could be attributed to alcohol. The paper stated clearly that alcohol plays a causal role in cancers of the throat and neck, voice box, liver and colon, as well as esophageal squamous cell carcinoma and, in women, breast cancer.

For women, just one alcoholic drink a day can increase breast cancer risk, according to a report released in May from the American Institute for Cancer Research and the World Cancer Research Fund that was cited by ASCO. That report analyzed 119 studies, including data on 12 million women and over a quarter of a million breast cancer cases, and concluded there was strong evidence that alcohol consumption increases the risk of both pre- and postmenopausal cancer, and that drinking a small glass of wine or beer every day — about 10 grams of alcohol — increases premenopausal breast cancer risk by 5 percent and postmenopausal risk by 9 percent.

“The more you drink, the higher the risk,” said Dr. Clifford A. Hudis, the chief executive of ASCO. “It’s a pretty linear dose-response.”

Read full article: Cancer Doctors Cite Risks of Drinking Alcohol – The New York Times

Read Full Article: Cancer Doctors Cite Risks of Drinking Alcohol – The New York Times 

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