While we all enjoy the occassional drive/stroll to the ‘local’ after work to wind down and indulge our friends in debate partaining all things sports and politics while downing our favorite brand of whiskey or beer, the reality is that this a harmful life threatening choice leaving many on their deathbeds before they hit 50. Did you know that 3.5% of cancer deaths worldwide are attributed to consumptin of alcohol, even in light an moderate consumption.
The alcohol industry has tried to actively mislead the public about the risk of cancer due to alcohol consumption. One of the most common debates existent to man is which alcohol is more superior with many boasting of the smoothness in whisky. While they might all be true in their arguments, the reality is that whatever type of alcohol you drink doesnt matter as all of them have the innate ability to cause 7 different types of cancer. It icreases the risk of mouth cancer, pharyngeal(upper throat) cancer, oesophagael (food pipe) cancer, breast cancer, laryngeal (voice box) cancer, bowel cancer and liver cancer.
Drinking alcohol increases your risk of cancer as it can damage the cells of the liver, causing a disease called cirrhosis which makes you more likely to develop liver cancer. Alcohol also increases the levels of some hormones in the body including oestrogen and insulin by changing the way the body metabolizes them and this can be associated with breast cancer. It can also affect the cells between the mouth and throat leading to increased absorption of other carcinogens. Research shows that over 75% of people coping with oral cancer are drinkers.
Each year on 4th of February, people across the globe come together to mark World Cancer Day by collectively showing support and raising our voices to create awareness and encourage its prevention, detection and treatment. Cancer is a global health priority and not a respecter of persons. This year marks the launch of the 3-year ‘I am and I will’ campaign emphasising on the power of individual action and urging personal commitment towards reduction of the impact of cancer. The campaign was built to inspire change and mobilise action long after the day has passed.
Whether you are a binge drinker, occassional drinker or drink alcohol in small amounts, you should think twice before downing that expensive bottle and staggering home at 4am on Sunday morning. Cutting down on consumption levels will reduce your risk of getting cancer tremendously.