After examining 27 studies, researchers in Canada and Australia have published a paper warning that alcohol consumption increases a person’s risk for prostate cancer. And while the research is not there to say that alcohol causes prostate cancer, there is a definite link between consumption and odds that someone will develop cancer of the prostate. This information, which is now being shared with the public, highlights the need for more studies involving alcohol and its link to different cancers in both males and females.
The researchers poured over several different studies and were able to determine that the more a man drinks the more likely they are to develop prostate cancer. Even men who drink about 2 alcoholic drinks a day are 8 to 23% more likely to have this type of cancer.
So, what exactly is the connection between alcohol and prostate cancer? Researchers are unable to answer this question and many have said that more funding needs to be allocated for further research into alcohol’s effects on cancer cells. Some have hypothesized that alcohol changes the DNA in the cell over time. And while the exact source of these cancers is unknown, it is clear that alcohol greatly increases the risks for obtaining prostate cancer, which is the fifth leading cause of cancer death in males.
“This new study contributes to the strengthening evidence that alcohol consumption is a risk factor for prostate cancer. Alcohol’s contribution to prostate cancer will need to be factored into future estimates of the global burden of disease,” explained Tim Stockwell, co-author of the study.
Over the last few years, researchers have found more and more evidence that alcohol greatly increases cancer risk in drinkers. This new analysis adds prostate cancer to mouth, stomach, esophagus, and liver cancers that drinkers are more likely to develop. Women drinkers are also at a greater risk of developing breast cancer. The toll that these cancers take on the patient, families and taxpayers is something that need to be explored further as well.