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Cancer risk: A bottle of wine comparable to ten cigarettes a week

Cancer risk: A bottle of wine comparable to ten cigarettes a week


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How much does wine consumption increase the risk of cancer?

How dangerous is wine consumption in relation to the risk of developing cancer compared to smoking cigarettes? Researchers have now found that one bottle of wine a week increases the risk of cancer to the same extent that up to ten cigarettes do.

A recent study by the University of Southampton found that consuming one bottle of wine a week increased the risk of developing cancer as much as smoking up to ten cigarettes. The results of the study were published in the English-language journal "BioMedCentral Public Health".

How did wine consumption affect cancer risk?

The first study of this type compared the known dangers of smoking with those of increased alcohol consumption. The researchers found the cigarette equivalent to a bottle of wine, so to speak. This corresponded to an amount of five cigarettes in men and ten cigarettes in women. The risk of cancer with three bottles of red or white wine or ten large glasses consumed per week is even higher. The team of experts estimated that ten out of 1,000 men will get cancer at some point in their lives if they drink a bottle of wine weekly. For women, this value was 14 out of 1,000 women for comparison. Men were more likely to get gastrointestinal cancers, while women were most at risk of breast cancer. If men and women drank three bottles a week, the risk increased massively. In this case, high consumption led to cancer of 19 out of 1,000 men and 36 out of 1,000 women.

Individual risk can vary

The researchers did not assess the risk of cancer from drinking beer because they were concerned with the amount of alcohol and not the type of drink. The findings of the current study relate to the lifetime risk in the entire population. At an individual level, the risk of cancer naturally varies due to alcohol consumption or smoking. For many people, the effects of ten units of alcohol (a bottle of wine) or five to ten cigarettes can be very different.

Why the comparison between alcohol and smoking?

A comparison of the risks of alcohol and smoking will hopefully encourage adults to consume less alcohol in the future, the study authors said. It is well known that heavy drinking is associated with cancer of the mouth, throat, intestine, liver and breast. In contrast to smoking, the danger from alcohol consumption is generally not taken seriously enough by the public. By comparing cigarettes and alcohol, the researchers hoped that the general public would be more effective in pointing out the risk of cancer from these unhealthy lifestyle factors. (as)

Author and source information



Video: One Bottle of Wine Equals the Cancer Risk of 10 Cigarettes. Health News Updates. Cooking Light (November 2022).