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05/10/2017

5th Awareness Week on Alcohol Related Harm

Eurocare is proud to support the 5th Awareness Week on Alcohol related Harm, from 20th to 24th November 2017.

The Awareness Week on Alcohol Related Harm (AWARH) was initiated in 2013 by a group of like-minded organisations who favoured an integrated approach to alcohol-related harm. The organisations agreed that an EU-level awareness raising campaign should be established to provide information on the detrimental effects associated with alcohol consumption.

A recent Cancer Research UK study suggested that as many as 9 in 10 people are unaware that alcohol increases the risk of cancer, as such it is fitting that the theme of this year’s Awareness Week is Alcohol and Cancer. The first conclusive links between alcohol and cancer were established in 1987, yet 25 years later only 36% of EU citizens were aware of it.

A study by United European Gastroenterology finds a direct correlation between drinking cultures and higher cancer risk, with heavy episodic drinking associated with a higher incidence of digestive cancers.

In the EU, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by cancer but the link between alcohol and cancer is often forgotten. Ethanol, which is found in all alcoholic beverages, is classified as a group 1 carcinogen. Alcohol can cause cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, oesophagus, liver, colorectum and breast.

Regarding alcohol consumption, the new European Code Against Cancer is: If you drink alcohol of any type, limit your intake. Not drinking alcohol is better for cancer prevention.

Europe is the world’s heaviest-drinking region, with some European countries drinking double the global average. Awareness about the link between alcohol and cancer is crucial for effective prevention efforts.

As far as cancer is concerned, no level of alcohol consumption has been found to be definitively safe.

This year Mariann Skar, Secretary General of European Alcohol Policy Alliance, said: ‘We would like to call on all actors, to help raise awareness about the fact that alcohol contributes to cancer development. It is our right as consumers to know about the side effects that alcohol can cause to our health’

More information about AWARH’17 is available at: http://www.awarh.eu/

To support AWARH 2017, you can:

- Show your support for AWARH’17 through the Thunderclap Campaign (coming soon)

- Send a letter to your national policymakers asking them to commit to do more against alcohol-related harm in their country and in Europe.

- Organise a national event on the week of 20th November and apply for endorsement by emailing: info@awarh.eu

- Tweet your support for the AWARH 2017 and tell us why tackling alcohol-related harm is important to you by using the hashtag: #AWARH17

- Share with your friends the AWARH’17 partners and policy-makers interviews about alcohol-related harm

- Register to attend the meetings in Brussels and sign-up to the regular updates AWARH’17 here: info@awarh.eu

Sources: http://eurocare.org/library/we_care_about/alcohol_and_cancer

https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/sites/default/files/an_investigation_of_public_knowledge_of_the_link_between_alcohol_and_cancer_buykx_et_al.pdf

https://www.ueg.eu/news/news/news-details/article/alcohol-digestive-cancers-time-for-change/

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