By L.A. Williams
Christian Action League
August 23, 2023
A headache, a hangover, and a night of regrettable actions — most folks know the common and immediate problems created by drinking too much alcohol. But what they may not know is that alcohol is linked to seven different types of cancer and a myriad of other long-term health problems including liver disease, heart disease, and stroke.
Two recent studies highlight how alcohol is linked to hypertension and colorectal cancer.
“It’s no wonder the World Health Organization has released a statement reiterating that there is no safe amount of alcohol,” says the Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League.
In the recent hypertension study, researchers analyzed seven international studies involving more than 19,000 healthy adults. They found that daily drinking was linked to increases in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
“We found no beneficial effects in adults who drank a low level of alcohol compared to those who did not drink alcohol,” said Dr. Marco Vinceti, a professor of epidemiology and public health and one of the study’s authors. “We were somewhat surprised to see that consuming an already-low level of alcohol was also linked to higher blood pressure changes over time compared to no consumption.”
The findings, which are especially significant considering 48 percent of American adults have high blood pressure, were likely no surprise to researchers at Harvard Medical School.
“Alcohol seems to have adverse effects on nearly every form of heart disease,” says Dr. JoAnn Manson, a professor of women’s health at the school.
Alcohol increases the risk of heart failure, stroke, cardiomyopathy, aortic aneurysm, and atrial fibrillation, Harvard Women’s Health Watch reported last year. A January 2022 policy brief from the World Heart Federation made it clear that no type of alcohol — including wine — is a friend to your heart, the publication noted.
More recently, a paper published in the June issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology revealed a direct link between alcohol consumption, even in small amounts, and an increased risk of colorectal cancer.
The research shows that alcohol might be linked to early-onset colorectal cancer, meaning younger folks could be at risk even if they drink only moderate amounts.
To perform the study, researchers from the Seoul National University College of Medicine used data from the Korean National Health Insurance Service to compare average daily alcohol consumption with early-onset CRC risk among some 5.7 million adults under 50. The study showed that moderate and heavy drinking was associated with an elevated risk of early-onset CRC. The increased risk was most noticeable among women, where moderate drinking was associated with a 47-percent increased risk of distal colon cancer. Among nondrinkers, there was a 14-percent reduced risk of rectal cancer compared with light drinkers.
According to the Alcohol and Drug Foundation, several studies have shown that “the risk of developing colon cancer increases with each glass of alcohol you drink. Even one standard drink per day (10 grams of alcohol) can increase your risk.”
“This week I went to a jewelry store to purchase an anniversary gift for my wife. A young woman by the name of Claire was serving me. We had never met before. I showed her a picture of my wife on my phone but my hands were trembling from the life-threatening bout with COVID I had two years ago. She could hardly see the picture because of my tremor.” said Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League. “But then she showed me that she had a tremor, too. She said, ‘My tremor is because of a life-threatening bout with alcohol. I’ve been sober now for 29 months. Still, this is what alcohol did to me.’”
“There are more lies surrounding the subject of alcohol than there are pages in a library. And, there is no lie more egregious than the one embraced for decades that drinking in moderation, especially drinking wine, can be healthy. Independent studies are revealing the truth. There is nothing healthy about it. It’s a risk to one’s health – a serious risk,” added Rev. Creech.