Heavy Alcohol Consumption and Lung Cancer

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Many people are already suffering from certain diseases which affect the respiratory system. Some of which includes Lung cancer which can put a great deal of discomfort to the person affected with this condition. It can cause difficulty of breathing, chest pain and even coughing out of blood. Some studies link lung cancer with heavy smoking. However, it is also tied up with heavy alcohol consumption, a new study suggests.

Lung Cancer just like any malignancies is a disease that has an uncontrollable cell division of the cells of the lungs. These uncontrollable cell division results to tumor which are malignant in nature, and can cause metastasis, affecting other organs in the body. The person who has this condition at first does not recognize that he is already having the disease unless a chest x-ray would be done. Symptoms of Lung cancer include severe cough for more than weeks, shortness of breath, chest pain, hemoptysis which is coughing of blood, and hoarseness of voice.

According to the new study presented at CHEST 2011, the 77th annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP), heavy alcohol consumption can increase the risk of a person from having lung cancer after conducting a comprehensive investigation on individuals who consume alcoholic beverages at large amount.

The new study involves the examination of data which are dated from 1978 to 1985 for about 126,293 individuals. The study is conducted to determine the relationship between the development of lung cancer and risk factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, gender, Body Mass Index (BMI), ethnicity, and educational attainment. The research had found out that smoking is the most significant risk factor for the development of lung cancer among those 1,852 individuals, who develop lung cancer. In addition, they had also taken into account that those individuals with heavy alcohol consumption of about greater than 3 alcoholic drinks per day have heightened risk for the said condition. Furthermore, the researchers also take a look on the kind of alcoholic beverages, finding out that heavy consumption of beer has a slight higher risk as compared to wine and liquor beverages.

Stanton Siu, MD, FCCP, Kaiser Permanente, Oakland, California, who worked on the study said: “We did not see a relationship between moderate drinking and lung cancer development. So it appears probable that most middle-aged and older moderate drinkers have coronary artery protection and no increased risk of lung cancer risk.”

Says the World Health Organization, In many parts of the world, drinking alcoholic beverages is a common feature of social gatherings. Nevertheless, the consumption of alcohol carries a risk of adverse health and social consequences related to its intoxicating, toxic and dependence-producing properties.

Moreover, healthy lifestyle which is composed of good nutrition and proper exercise is needed to enhance the one’s health. The idea that heavy alcohol drinking is being linked with lung cancer should be known by the major population for them to prevent this health condition.




  1. Alcohol affects people differently. Some people after a night of drinking can sleep the day away but other people wake up early after a night of drinking. If you want to know why your body does this, this article gives a great explanation on it.


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