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Another Reason to Avoid Alcohol

Alcohol should be avoided at all costs when on a weight loss programme – the two simply do not go together.

But now there is another reason to avoid alcohol…..We know that there's an association between smoking and lung cancer, and now we can add alcohol and general cancer to the association list. A new study published in April 2013 in the American Journal of Public Health was the first to quantify alcohol use in cancer death, making alcohol consumption the number one preventable cause of cancer deaths.

Alcohol and Cancer Deaths

Researchers studied the mortality rate and research related to cancer deaths published since 2000 and combined it with alcohol sales data. They estimated that 3.5 percent of all cancer deaths are alcohol-related. In particular, some cancer deaths are more attributable to alcohol consumption. In men, mouth, throat and esophageal cancers account for the majority of alcohol-related cancer deaths. In women, breast cancer accounts for the majority of alcohol-attributable deaths.

There is some confusion because some heart associations advocate that a small daily “dose” of wine or whiskey may protect your heart, however, it does not protect you against the cancers mentioned above. And adding colourful fruit and vegetables and Omega-3’s to your meal plan are far more effective to protect your heart.

If you are a woman and if you are not a drinker, don't start drinking. As mentioned above, the risk of developing breast cancer rises with increased alcohol use. If you are at high risk for breast cancer, consider whether you should stop drinking. In addition, women develop alcohol-related health problems, faster than men who drink exactly the same amount of alcohol.

The Bottom Line

Researchers of this study emphasized that alcohol is a known cancer-causing substance. Alcohol use should be minimized or avoided altogether to reduce cancer risk and also to manage your weight.

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