Drinking too much white wine increases skin cancer risk

In a new find, researchers have revealed that too much consumption of white wine can increase the risk of skin cancer. Excess of alcohol intake especially white wine triggers melanoma —  a type of skin cancer.

Also known as malignant melanoma, the skin cancer develops from the pigment-containing cells known as melanocytes. Melanomas typically occur in the skin but may rarely occur in the mouth, intestines, or eye. In men, it commonly affects back while in women the disease majorly affects legs.

Sometimes they develop from a mole with concerning changes including an increase in size, irregular edges, change in color, itchiness, or skin breakdown.

While examining an interlink between melanoma risk and different types of alcohol drinks, study authors found that white wine significantly increased risk of skin cancer. The risk of melanoma was greater for body parts that receive less sun exposure.

“It was surprising that white wine was the only drink independently associated with increased risk of melanoma,” said study author Eunyoung Cho, Associate Professor at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, US.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), alcohol consumption is behind 3.6 percent of cancer cases all around the globe. Most common types of cancers attributed to alcohols are aerodigestive tract, liver, pancreas, colon, rectum, and breast cancer.

For the study, researchers observed data of 210,252 participants with mean age of 18.3 years. All study subjects were drinking alcohol. A standard drink was defined as 12.8 grams of alcohol.

After analysing the data, it was found that excess consumption of increased the risk of melanoma. 14 percent risk of melanoma was increased with every drink of alcohol per day. While drinking white wine with associated with additional 13 percent risk of melanoma. Study authors revealed that other forms of alcohol like beer, red wine and whisky did not affect much as far as skin cancer is concerned.

Study authors haven’t found exact reason behind such a correlation and a study on larger scale is required to confirm the find. As of now, researchers have advised people to curb the alcohol consumption.

The study appeared in the journal Cancer Epidmiology.

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