It’s time to put cancer warning labels on alcohol, experts say

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No amount of alcohol is safe, says new report from Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction. Photo: Pexels


(Ioanna Roumeliots/ CBC News) — The pressure on the government to put cancer warning labels on alcohol containers is growing, as experts say the majority of Canadians don’t know the risks that come with consuming even moderate amounts.

The latest catalyst is Canada’s new Guidance on Alcohol and Health, which updates the 2011 Low Risk Drinking Guidelines. The Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA), which released its final report today, points out that no amount of alcohol is safe and that consuming any more than two drinks a week is risky.

It’s a drastic shift from previous guidance, which recommended no more than 15 drinks for men and 10 drinks for women per week to reduce long-term health risks. The CCSA says the new advice reflects thousands of studies in the last decade that link even small amounts of alcohol to several types of cancer.

The new recommendations lay out a continuum of risk. Three-to-six drinks a week increases the risk of developing certain cancers, including colorectal and breast cancer, and more than seven drinks a week also increases your risk of heart disease and stroke. The danger goes up with every additional drink. (…)

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