May 16, 2007 Drinking moderate amounts of alcohol is associated with a decreased risk of renal cell cancer.
Some studies have found that people who drink alcohol have a lower risk of renal cell cancer, but these studies included a small number of patients.
Jung Eun Lee, Sc.D., of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, and colleagues analyzed 12 prospective studies of alcohol consumption among renal cell cancer patients.
In both men and women, drinking at least one alcoholic beverage a day, on average, was associated with a 30 percent reduced risk of renal cell cancer, compared with no alcohol intake. The type of alcoholic beverage did not appear to be important as lower risks were seen with beer, wine, and liquor.
"However, because alcohol drinking is associated with increased risks of cancers of the oral cavity, larynx, pharynx, esophagus, liver, and breast, and probably the colon and rectum, maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding smoking are the principal known means to reduce the risk of renal cell cancer that should be encouraged and doing so may also reduce the risk of many other cancers as well as cardiovascular disease," the authors write.
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