Canadian Partnership Against Cancer supports Canada’s updated Guidance on Alcohol and Health

Updated guidance from the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction recommends limiting alcohol consumption to reduce cancer risk.

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer (the Partnership) supports Canada’s updated Guidance on Alcohol and Health which was released today by the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA).

“We welcome this updated guidance by CCSA which includes specific considerations with respect to cancer risk,” says Dr. Craig Earle, CEO of the Partnership. “This new public resource will help all of us reconsider our relationship to alcohol and where we can do better to reduce our risk of cancer.”

As noted by CCSA, alcohol use is linked to at least seven types of cancer and nearly 7,000 annual cancer deaths in Canada. Breast and colorectal cancer are among the leading causes of alcohol-related cancer deaths, followed by cancers of the mouth and throat, liver, esophagus and larynx.

The guidance features a risk continuum based on daily alcohol intake. To reduce the risk of cancer, it advises not drinking alcohol at all. A limit of two standard drinks a week is recommended for those who choose to drink.

“The updated guidance is an important milestone in public health and cancer control,” says Dr. Earle. “It aligns with the Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control, connecting directly with the Strategy’s priority to decrease the risk of people getting cancer with a focus on behavioural changes that people can make to reduce their own risk. Knowing the impact of alcohol use on cancer risk is an important factor for cancer prevention”

Canada’s updated Guidance on Alcohol and Health was developed by CCSA through research and collaboration with experts across Canada and around the world, including public consultation in 2022 in which the Partnership participated. It replaces the previous Canada’s Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines.

Read the Partnership’s updated alcohol policy page.

For more information and media inquiries about Canada’s Guidance on Alcohol and Health, contact CCSA.