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Daily drinking 'raises breast cancer risk’

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Researchers from Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston found that just one small glass of wine a day raises a woman's risk of developing breast cancer. Women who also drink every day, no matter how little, are 13 per cent more likely to be diagnosed with other cancers such as tumours of the liver, bowel, throat, mouth, oesophagus and larynx.

The aim of the study was to look at people who drink moderately and warn this group that even a small tipple can be harmful.

"People with a family history of cancer, especially women with a family history of breast cancer, should consider reducing their alcohol intake to below recommended limits, or even abstaining altogether," said addiction expert Dr Jürgen Rehm.

The risk of cancer was also looked at in relation to smoking. For women and breast cancer, smoking made no difference, as it's not related to the illness. However for men, their cancer chances are only raised by having a strong pint a day if they've ever been a smoker.

The study is published in the British Medical Journal and used data from two US studies, tracking 88,084 women and 47,881 men for up to 30 years.

In a separate study, researchers from Oxford University's Million Women Study also found a link between moderate drinking and breast cancer. Here it was found that there were an extra 11 breast cancers for every 1,000 women under 75 for each additional drink consumed per day.

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