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DH launches alcohol cancer campaign

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Regularly drinking two large glasses of wine or two strong pints of beer a day triples the risk of developing mouth cancer, a new government campaign from the Department of Health will say.

The adverts aim to show that drinking just over the recommended daily limit for alcohol increases the risk of serious health problems.

NHS recommendations are that men should not regularly drink more than three to four units a day, while women should not regularly drink more than two to three.

Adverts will run under the Change4Life banner and people will be able to access a new online calculator to work out how much they are drinking. Two million leaflets will also be made available to Change4Life supporters and health professionals across England.

Drinkers will be encouraged to cut down through measures such as having alcohol-free days, not drinking at home before going out, swapping to low or alcohol-free drinks and using smaller glasses.

The campaign follows a survey of more than 2,000 people which found 85% do not realise that drinking over recommended limits increases the risk of developing breast cancer. Some 65% were unaware it increases the risk of bowel cancer, 63% did not know about a raised risk of pancreatitis and 59% did not realise excess drinking increases the risk of mouth, throat and neck cancer. Some 30% did not realise that drinking just over the limit increases the risk of high blood pressure and 37% did not realise it can impact on fertility.

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