A new study by The American Institute for Cancer Research finds that even one alcoholic drink a day can increase the risk for breast cancer.

Townsquare Media
Townsquare Media

Breast surgeon Dr. Debra Camal with Hackensack Meridian Health explains that it's the result of how your body breaks down the alcohol you consume with the chemical compound Acetaldehyde.

"The acetaldehyde is a chemical that tends to mutate your DNA,"said Camal. "When your genetic material is changed or mutated, some of those mutations can lead to an increased cancer risk."

She says you don't have to remove wine or beer from your diet completely but cutting it down to once or twice a week, exercising often and eating healthier foods such as apricots, carrots or kale can help lower your risk of getting breast cancer.

The new medical study put out by the AICR analyzed over 12,000,000 million women with over 260,000 breast cancer cases, according to report details.

Even further, they had 10 population based/cohort studies in which they analyzed 4,000 pre-menopausal women with breast cancer and 22 other cohort studies involving 35,000 post-menopausal women with breast cancer.

To lower your risk of getting breast cancer Camal once again suggests that you cut down on your daily intake.

"Perhaps one or two drinks on the weekends or drinking once or twice during the week instead of drinking everyday," said Camal.

She adds that you can reduce your own risk as well by constantly making healthy life choices to improve your overall health.

"Things like your body weight, your alcohol intake and your activity level," said Camal. "Those are modifiable risk factors (meaning) you can change those things."

Camal explains that about one-third of all breast cancer cases in the United States are preventable,"if women did not drink alcohol, if they exercised enough and if they stayed a healthy weight."

Some food items to help you lower your risk of getting breast cancer include green leaf vegetables such as spinach or kale.

"Take in a diet that's high in calcium and eat certain types of vegetables, what we call the 'carotenoids' which are carrots, sweet potatoes and even apricots," said Camal.

She also encourages you to avoid fatty foods in your diet.

The new study also found women who are obese post-menopause have more of a risk (nine-percent) of getting breast caner than obese women pre-menopause (five-percent), among those drinking a daily dose of 10-grams of alcohol with most drinks actually contacting 14-grams, which is why Camal says it's important to exercise often.

"Get on an exercise routine, try and do it regularly, vigorously and what your diet at the same time because there will be some impact on the cancer risk there," said Camal.

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