Most of us enjoy a cocktail, glass of wine, or beer every so often. No doubt too much of a good thing can be bad, affecting the liver, weight, developing baby, or your judgement. However, research indicates that in moderate amounts, alcohol is actually heart-healthy! For women, that’s up to one drink per day, which is five ounces of wine, twelve of beer, or one shot of hard liquor. So, that’s fair enough, but there is a catch; alcohol is not healthy for all tissues, and women face a dilemma because of that. Alcohol increases breast cancer risk, that is quite clear. One large report linked drinking with an increased risk of breast cancer. Simply drink just one half glass of wine meant a 6% increase in risk, and almost 40% with the consumption of three glasses! This makes perfect sense, biologically, because alcohol slows estrogen metabolism, which leads to higher blood stream levels. And estrogen stimulates breast tissue (you get the idea). The latest news only builds upon this, finding that only three to four drinks per week in overweight or post-menopause women leads to recurrence in breast cancer patients. So what’s a woman to do? Think twice about daily intake if you are overweight, sedentary, gave birth to your firstborn after thirty years old, or have a family history with breast cancer. After all, we don’t say “a drink a day keeps the doctor away” for good reason!
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