Limiting alcohol to reduce your cancer risk

How Much Is Too Much?

While some research suggests drinking wine can support heart health, consuming alcohol hasn’t been shown to reduce cancer risk.

In fact, studies reveal alcohol consumption is associated with a higher risk of developing several types of cancer, and has been shown to increase risk of recurrence in cancer survivors.  

Studies show breast cancer survivors who drank more than three to four drinks per week were at a higher risk for recurrence.
 
Excess drinking can also cause weight gain, one of the greatest known risk factors for cancer.  

If cancer survivors choose to drink alcohol, limit consumption to no more than one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.
 

How much is one drink?

  • 12 ounces of beer
  • 5 ounces of wine
  • 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits
     
Studies show that the overall amount of alcohol consumed is the important factor, not the type of alcohol. This limit refers to daily consumption and shouldn’t be used to justify drinking more alcohol in fewer days. 
 

Don’t drink

  • If you are under the legal drinking age
  • Are or may become pregnant
  • Have a history of alcoholism
  • If you’re taking any medications that may have an interaction with alcohol
  • If you plan to drive or operate machinery
  • If your doctor has told you not to drink