Alcohol and cancer in women

In the UK, the Million Women Study, as the title suggests, followed one million women for seven years. With about 70,000 developing cancer, alcohol consumption was closely looked at as a contributory factory.

Most women in the UK drink moderate amounts of alcohol, the study average being one drink per day. Even with such moderates amounts, an increase was recorded in the incidence of a number of cancers, including breast cancer, cancer of the mouth, throat, larynx and liver.

To quantify the risk:

·tby the age of 75, 12 in every 100 women will have developed some kind of cancer

·tthis is increased by another one, about 10%, for every drink a women takes

·tso for every drink a women takes, it will go from 12-13, for every two, 12-14 and so on

·tbreast cancer represent the highest increase, with the other cancers being quite uncommon

What is surprising is that for cancers of the thyroid, kidneys and some lymphomas, there was actually a reduction in risk with an increase in alcohol consumption. However, the dangers of excessive drinking should be considered.

Find out more on the Million Women Study.