Every 15 minutes someone in Ireland hears the words, ‘You have cancer’. Cancer rates are rising but so too are survival rates. Alcohol is a known cause of at least seven cancers, which is why Drinkaware is proud to support Cancer Week Ireland 2017. This year it wants to start a national conversation about cancer and how more people are surviving as more advances are made in detection and treatment.
Each year in Ireland, 900 people are diagnosed with alcohol-related cancers and roughly 500 die as a result. The link between alcohol and cancer is well-established - one in ten of all cancers in men and one in thirty-three in women are caused by alcohol. But did you know that four out of ten cancers are preventable? Drinking less alcohol is just one of the ways you can reduce your risk. This Cancer Week, why not take some time to think about your drinking habits and see if you can make a change?
It’s simple – the more you drink, the higher your cancer risk. Even just one drink a day will increase the risk of breast, mouth and throat cancers by a small amount. There’s no safe limit for alcohol when it comes to cancer, but the risk is smaller for people who drink within the HSE low-risk guidelines for alcohol consumption.
Latest figures from the National Cancer Registry of Ireland (NCRI) show a 300% rise in liver cancer diagnoses in Ireland in the past two decades. The average number of new cases each year has gone from 60 in the mid-1990s to more than 270 in 2014. The NCRI point to high alcohol consumption in recent decades as one of the biggest reasons for this four-fold increase.
Keep any eye on how much you drink on average each week. Sticking to the HSE low-risk guidelines can help to reduce your risk of developing cancer and a range of other health conditions. Remember, these are guidelines - not a target.
Drinkaware research from 2017 shows that 1 in 3 people in Ireland would like to drink less often. Small changes to the way you consume alcohol and how much you drink can make a big difference to your health and wellbeing both now and in the future. The next time you drink alcohol, why not try some of our quick tips?
Try out our drinks calculator to see the number of standard drinks and calories in different drinks, as well as how much money you spent and how long it will take the alcohol to leave your system.