The Effects of Alcohol on the Body
Daily units for alcohol drinking limit for women is one standard unit and two standard for men. Also people who do not drink alcohol should not start drinking for any reason, as alcohol affects all organs of the body, especially the brain, heart, liver, pancreas and the immune system.
In the extensive review of cancer research and scientific studies, there is a strong consensus that there is a link between drinking alcohol and some cancers. The National Toxicology Program, a subsidiary of the US Department of Health and Human Services, lists alcoholic beverages in the list of carcinogens or cancerous for humans. Scientific research has shown that the more a person drinks alcohol, especially if they consume it frequently over a period of time, the more they are at risk for some cancers. The most important of these cancers are:
Head and Neck Cancer: Alcohol drinking is known to be one of the factors contributing to the increased risk of cancer in the head and neck areas. The risk is especially high for cancers of the oral cavity (excluding the lips), throat and pharynx. People who drink more than 50 grams of alcohol or more per day (equivalent to 3.5 standard units of alcohol) are at least two to three times more likely to develop these cancers than non-drinkers. In addition, the risk of developing these cancers is increased in people who also smoke.
Esophageal Cancer: Drinking alcohol is one of the major contributors to the risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. People with a genetic defect and whose body lacks a specific enzyme for metabolism and burning off alcohol are at greater risk for developing this type of cancer.
Liver Cancer: Drinking alcohol is not only an independent factor in increasing the risk of liver cancer, but is also known to be a primary cause of hepatocellular carcinoma. Two other major causes of this cancer are chronic infection with hepatitis B and C viruses.
Breast Cancer: To date, more than 100 epidemiological studies have been conducted to investigate the association between drinking alcohol and breast cancer in women. All these studies, without exception, have shown that there is a relationship between an increase in daily alcohol consumption and an increased risk of breast cancer in women. An extensive review of 53 of these studies (involving a total of 58000 women with breast cancer) found that women who consumed more than 45 grams of alcohol per day (equivalent to three standard units of alcohol and three times as much for daily limit for women) is 3.5 times more at risk of breast cancer than women who do not drink alcohol. Broader studies in the US and UK have found that overall, for every 10 grams of alcohol consumed daily, the risk of breast cancer increases for women by between 7 and 12 percent (compared to women who do not drink alcohol). .
Colorectal Cancer: Drinking alcohol increases the risk of colon and rectal cancers. An extensive study of the results of 57 different studies found that people who drank more than 50 grams of alcohol or more per day (equivalent to 3.5 standard units of alcohol), were 1.5 times more likely than non-drinkers in risk of colorectal cancer. Overall, for every 10 grams of alcohol consumed daily, the risk of colorectal cancer increases by about 7 percent (compared to people who do not drink alcohol).
In view of the above, it can be said that there is a clear relationship between daily intake of alcohol and some cancers. Accordingly, it is best for everyone to reconsider the amount and type of alcohol they drink. The best way to avoid the side effects of alcohol is to drink alcoholic beverages on special occasions and limit the consumption of this substance in general. On the other hand, it should be noted that according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there is no difference between alcohol and wine and other alcoholic beverages, and excessive consumption of these beverages can cause all the above mentioned side effects which are mostly caused by drinking alcohol.