Alcohol Increases Breast Cancer Risk

New study finds even a glass of wine a day could raise risk in women.
3:23 | 11/01/11

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Transcript for Alcohol Increases Breast Cancer Risk
Breast cancer and alcohol including -- The results are in from the biggest study of its kind in history by the American Medical Association. 100000. Women followed over 28 years in the conclusion. Less than a drink good day even a glass of wine with dinner could change the risk of breast cancer -- home and why. So we ask ABC's Andrea canning to break it all down for us tonight. The new study out today found compelling evidence that having even a single glass of wine each day. Freezes your risk of breast cancer. In the past we've known women who consume a lot of alcohol increase the risk of breast cancer. We actually thought this small amount of alcohol was relatively safe for breast cancer. This study of more than a 100000 women over 28 year period. Shows just three to six glasses of alcohol a week can increase a woman's chances of breast cancer by 15%. Less than a glass of wine per -- he bumped that number up to two -- day the risk goes to 51%. Doesn't make you think twice about having that extra -- It might but honestly probably not but -- why is -- -- the person breast cancer I would definitely changed my at this. Doctors believe as many as 11%. Of breast cancers are linked to alcohol consumption. The increased risk is caused by the way the body reacts to alcohol drinking increases the levels of estrogen in the body fueling tumor creation and growth. So what do you do especially given the fact that we've heard in the past that moderate alcohol -- has been found to help prevent heart attack and stroke. The increased risk of breast cancer. He's really dwarfed by the evidence of increased risk of cardiovascular agencies. Still today's study is the most significant bit of evidence that every time you raise your glass he might be raising your breast cancer risk. Injury canning ABC news New York. Which brings us to ABC's chief health and medical editor doctor Richard -- so rich are you confident -- this is this going to be another study received reversed. And another couple of months this is this is the best yet on this question is not the first but it's the best and if you have family members women in your -- -- died from breast cancer. There's not a lot you can do with this says there's something you can do they could possibly reduce your risk. And that's -- -- -- looked at all the evidence you think there are on -- something here at all are they think they are. OK let me ask -- about the other thing we keep hearing which is a little bit of alcohol moderate alcohol. Prevents heart disease and -- so. How do you choose between as well -- that's the catch if you don't have that breast cancer risk you have to remember that a small amount of alcohol one drink a day or less has been shown in lots of studies to reduce your risk of heart disease. And you have to remember one in three women are gonna die from heart disease only one in 36. Are gonna die from breast cancer. So it may be worth continuing to have that drink if you don't have that increase breast cancer start by taking a look at your risk factors and then decide which portrait and it. If you don't now no one is saying start drinking too many things they can go wrong with starting -- But look at your own risk factors and that should help you decide okay thanks Richard Reid said this -- -- really big news study and in conclusion.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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