Alcohol consumption may increase pancreatic cancer risk

Published: Tuesday, March 3, 2009 - 13:31 in Health & Medicine

Consuming two or more drinks per day could increase a person's risk of pancreatic cancer by about 22 percent, according to data published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. "Our findings support multiple nutrition recommendations that men should limit intake to no more than two alcoholic beverages per day and women should limit intake to no more than one," said lead author Jeanine M. Genkinger, Ph.D., an assistant professor at the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. A drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, four ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled liquor.

Genkinger and colleagues conducted a pooled analysis of the primary data from 14 research studies, for a population that included 862,664 individuals. Researchers identified 2,187 individuals diagnosed with pancreatic cancer during the study.

"This is one of the largest studies ever to look at dietary factors in relation to pancreatic cancer risk," said Genkinger.

If individuals consumed 30 or more grams of alcohol per day, compared with no alcohol per day, their risk of pancreatic cancer increased by 22 percent.

No difference was observed by type of alcohol, according to Genkinger.

Source: American Association for Cancer Research

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