Published online Aug 15, 2010. doi: 10.4251/wjgo.v2.i8.322
Revised: July 30, 2010
Accepted: August 6, 2010
Published online: August 15, 2010
Results from several large epidemiological studies have firmly established that alcohol is associated with elevated cancer incidence and mortality. Recently the International Agency for Cancer Research stated that acetaldehyde associated with alcoholic beverages is carcinogenic to humans and confirmed the Group 1 classification of alcohol consumption and of ethanol in alcoholic beverages. Alcohol consumption causes cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, oesophagus, colorectum, liver, pancreas and female breast. The frequency of most alcohol-induced diseases increases in a linear fashion as intake increases: oral, oesophagus and colon cancer fall into this pattern. Very little is known about safe margins of alcohol consumption. US Department of Health and Human Services suggest a maximum of 28 g of alcohol a day in man and half of this in women.