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Drink Up, Boost Pancreatic Cancer Risk?

Two or More Alcoholic Drinks Daily May Raise Pancreatic Cancer Risk, Study Shows

Second Opinion

Peter Shields, MD, deputy director of the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer at Georgetown University but not a co-researcher of the study, reviewed the paper for WebMD and put the findings in perspective. Excess alcohol intake is already known to play a role in many cancers, he says, including esophageal, oral, liver, and breast cancers.

"Now there is some reasonable evidence it might also cause pancreatic cancer," Shields says.

"No single study is ever definitive," he adds. But, being an analysis of previously published studies, the new report, he says, is "better than a single study."

The Best Alcohol Advice?

The wisest course? Drinking one drink a day may be good for warding off heart disease, as several studies show, Shields says, "but there are other ways to prevent heart disease."

At the least, he says, people should be aware of the new findings.

Genkinger notes that based on their findings, the standing advice from the American Cancer Society and American Heart Association -- limit consumption to no more than two drinks a day for men and one for women -- makes sense.

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