In an Australian first, alcohol-caused cancer will be the focus of a major new campaign to raise awareness about the health risks associated with alcohol consumption.
Mental Health Minister Graham Jacobs said the Liberal-National Government wanted West Australians to understand the evidence linking alcohol and cancer was significant and growing every day.
“The facts are clear - the more alcohol you drink, the higher your risk of developing cancer,” Dr Jacobs said.
“In research for the latest ‘Alcohol. Think Again’ campaign, we found one in three West Australians did not know about the link between drinking alcohol and cancer.
“Through this campaign we are telling West Australians loud and clear there is a proven link between drinking alcohol and developing cancer.
Eminent WA surgeon and president of the Cancer Council WA, Professor Christobel Saunders, said the long-term use of alcohol caused a range of diseases including stroke, cardiovascular disease and diseases of the gut and liver.
“When you drink alcohol you risk developing cancer, and every drink you have increases that risk,” Professor Saunders said.
“Wherever we see higher rates of alcohol consumption in the community, we also see higher rates of alcohol-caused disease, including cancer.
“For women, alcohol-caused cancers can develop in the throat, pancreas, liver, bowel and breast, with a strong link between alcohol consumption and breast cancer.”
The Minister said the latest phase of the ‘Alcohol. Think Again’ campaign was especially targeted to try and stop the increasing trend towards harmful drinking among women.
“But these important health messages clearly also apply to men,” Dr Jacobs said.
“We need to think again about alcohol - and think seriously about the way we are drinking and how much we drink,” he said.
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