Page last updated: Aug2020
Light alcohol drinking and the risk of cancer development: a controversial relationship

A study published by researchers at the University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, NA, Italy finds that although heavy alcohol consumption (>50g per day) represents a risk factor for several diseases development, including cancer, the oncogenic role of light alcohol drinking (<12.5g per day) is still unknown. Their study assessed the scientific knowledge about light alcohol consumption and the risk of malignancy onset.
A search for relevant studies, published in the last 15 years identified twenty-nine large meta-analysis that were included in this review. Light alcohol drinking was not associated with an increased risk of cancer occurrence, with the exception of breast and prostate cancer and melanoma. Furthermore, a possible protective role of light alcohol assumption consumption on the development of bladder, kidney and ovarian cancer and Non Hodgkin Lymphoma was shown.
The study conclusion is that light alcohol drinking was not associated to the development of several malignancies, except for a light increase of melanoma, breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men.
Source: G G Caprio, D Picascia, M Dallio*, P P Vitiello, E F Giunta, V De Falco, L Abenavoli, A C Procopio, V Famiglietti, E Martinelli, A G Gravina, A Federico, F Ciardiello, C Loguercio and D Ciardiello, “Light Alcohol Drinking and the Risk of Cancer Development: A Controversial Relationship”, Reviews on Recent Clinical Trials (2020) 15: 1.
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