New research links alcohol with seven types of cancer.
Writing in the journal Addiction, researchers at the University of Otago in New Zealand say alcohol has a causal association with cancer of the oropharynx, larynx, esophagus, liver, colon, rectum and female breast.
While there has been evidence of an association between alcohol and cancer, the study claims it is causal, meaning it “directly causes cancer.”
The study was large, taking into account 10 years of global data collected by groups such as the World Cancer Research Fund and the American Institute for Cancer Research and the International Agency for Research on Cancer.
The risk of cancer from alcohol is largest among heavy drinkers, but affects both light and moderate drinkers as well.
According to the study, alcohol was responsible for 5.8 percent of all cancer deaths in 2012.
“We know that nine in 10 people aren’t aware of the link between alcohol and cancer,” Jana Witt of Cancer Research UK, who did not contribute to the study, told The Guardian newspaper. “And this review is a stark reminder that there’s strong evidence linking the two.”
And if you’re thinking that a little wine may help fight cardiovascular disease, this new study finds that the “evidence that moderate drinking provides protection against cardiovascular disease is not strong.”