Whether it’s a glass of chilled rosé at happy hour, a can of white wine you’ve tucked in your bag for a boozy picnic, or a goblet full of your fave Malbec during a Netflix binge session, we know you’ve got a serious thing for wine. And you’re not alone — two-thirds of women under the age of 30 are wine drinkers! So when we heard that wine might make you smarter, we were ready to call ourselves amateur sommeliers. But the latest science on one of our favorite beverages has us seriously rethinking our wine devotion.
According to new research from the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) and the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF), a small glass of wine or beer per day could increase a woman’s chances of developing pre-menopausal breast cancer by five percent. The report also found that this same amount of alcohol intake could increase a woman’s chances of developing post-menopausal breast cancer by nine percent. The news is especially alarming since the report’s “small glass of wine” weighs in at 10 grams, which is four grams fewer than the average alcoholic beverage (14 grams).
In order to develop their report “Diet, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Breast Cancer,” AICR and WCRF researchers examined 119 breast cancer studies from around the world, focusing specifically on connections between breast cancer and lifestyle elements such as food choices and working out. The report did contain some good news: Women can lower their risk of pre- and post-menopausal breast cancer by engaging in vigorous activity (AKA exercising) and maintaining a healthy body weight. In fact, the AICR estimates that 33 percent of breast cancer cases could be prevented if women didn’t drink alcohol, stayed active, and maintained a healthy weight.
While the report does not establish a definite, direct causal link between breast cancer and alcohol, it’s still helpful to keep these findings in mind, especially if you have a family history of breast cancer. While lacing up your sneakers and sweating it out on a bike or on a run might be considerably less glamorous than a rooftop happy hour, your body might just thank you for it. For more information, check out the AICF’s website for the full report.
What steps are you taking to stay healthy? Tweet us @BritandCo to let us know!
(Featured photo via Getty)