Does alcohol increase risk for breast cancer?
- Women who averaged three to four or more drinks per week were 34% more likely to have a recurrence than those who drank less than once a week.
- Likewise, breast cancer-specific mortality risk rose 51% for the regular drinkers among breast cancer survivors.
- The increased risk of recurrence was highest for women who drank two or more glasses of wine a day, while there was no significant risk increase among those who consumed less than three drinks overall per week.
- Postmenopausal breast cancer survivors were particularly at risk from moderate to heavy drinking, as were overweight and obese women.
- Alcohol also increases aromatase activity, which is the enzyme that converts other steroid hormones to estrogens.
- This is the same enzyme that drugs such as Femara and Arimidex is blocking.
- Therefore, alcohol works against these medications.