A single glass of wine every day can increase breast cancer risk – Researchers from Harvard sayMd Noman Siddique (Author) Published Date : Aug 21, 2015 22:20 IST
Alcohol consumption, even at moderate levels does not help in preventing health issues, particularly among women, say researchers at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Boston. The results of the study have been published in the British Medical Journal.
Alcohol continues to be the major risk factor in different types of cancers, particularly those of the liver, colon, esophagus and larynx. However, research till now had specifically targeted only those who had a high intake of alcohol.
For the present study, researchers followed a group of women and men who were moderate consumers of alcohol (three glasses in the case of women and two for men) The also decided to quantify the overall risk of cancer across different levels of alcohol consumption among men and women separately focusing on non smokers with light to moderate drinking habits. The goal of the research was to assess influence of drinking pattern on the general risk of cancer.
The results revealed a link between cancer and alcohol among men who were smokers at some stage in their life and not for non smokers. More particularly worrisome was the results for women, even non smokers where the link between alcohol consumption and cancers, with emphasis on breast cancer was significantly higher with a single glass of wine every day.
The researchers added further that heavy drinkers and those who abstained from drinking were less likely to have regular checkups with their doctors compared to people who were moderate in consuming alcohol. This factor comes into focus while analyzing results of the study in relation to prostate, colon and breast cancers.
Some 47,881 men and 80,884 women participated in the Nurses Health Study and follow up study by health professionals between the period 1980 and 2010.
In the editorial accompanying the article in BMJ, Dr. Jurgen Rehm, Director of Social and Epidemiological Research, Toronto stated that people with family history of cancer and particularly those with family history of breast cancer should look at reducing alcohol intake to below the recommended intake or better still abstain from alcohol altogether, given the link that has now been well established between alcohol related cancers and moderate drinking.
A single glass of wine every day can increase breast cancer risk – Researchers from Harvard say