Sep
28
2007

Breast cancer linked to alcohol consumption rates

Cancer causer?: A new European study is showing stronger links between daily alcohol consumption by women and their risk for breast cancer. (Flickr photo by wildflowers)
Cancer causer?: A new European study is showing stronger links between daily alcohol consumption by women and their risk for breast cancer. (Flickr photo by wildflowers)
Sometimes we write summaries of studies that have a very limited sampling of participants. Here’s one that’s more robust, and seems to have some startling news with it.

Heavy to moderate drinking of alcohol can hike up risks of developing breast cancer significantly, according to a study presented in Spain this week. The study followed the drinking habits and cancer incidences of 70,000 women.

In more detail, the study shows that women to had one or two drinks a day increased their risk for breast cancer by 10 percent. Those who drank three or more alcoholic beverages a day saw their breast cancer risks jump 30 percent.

And according to the study, it really didn’t matter what kind of alcohol was consumed: beer, wine or spirits. The European study also jives closely with the results of a 10-year study that’s been conducted in the San Francisco area which also is looking at the alcohol/breast cancer connection.

The findings fly counter to the health benefits that other studies have shown for drinking one glass a wine a day. Several studies have shown that a regular, minimal intake of wine each day can help decrease coronary problems.

Researchers in the European study acknowledge that female drinkers could be getting conflicting messages from the various studies. And they conclude that individual women should consider their family history with cancer and heart problems when deciding how often and how much they drink, particularly wine.

Scientists don't yet know why alcohol affects breast cancer.

Interested in more recent breast cancer developments? Read about this new cancer detection bra being developed in the U.K.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Alcohol Intervention's picture

I really didn't know about this. Unfortunately, I have some friends of mine (girls, of course) who use to drink a little too much and I am kind of concerned about it. I'll let them know the risks their dealing with.

posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 11:33am

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