A CAMPAIGN has been launched in the district highlighting links between alcohol and breast cancer.

Bradford Council has teamed-up with the Yorkshire and the Humber Alcohol Alliance for the month-long initiative.

People are being encouraged to visit a special website, at reducemyrisk.tv, for information and advice.

Estimates indicate that drinking two units of alcohol a day causes one extra woman out of every 50 to develop breast cancer.

And rates of alcohol-related breast cancer in Yorkshire and the Humber are above the national average.

Sarah Muckle, director of public health at Bradford Council, said: “Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in the UK.

“There are some risk factors you can’t change, like ageing and family history, but you can reduce the risks by changing and limiting alcohol intake.

“The evidence is clear that the risk of developing breast cancer increases the more regularly we drink – alcohol content and the frequency of drinking are contributing factors.

“It’s easy to underestimate the number of units in alcoholic drinks – a large glass of wine can easily contain at least three.

“A really good way to reduce drinking too often and too much is to try to have some drink-free days each week.

“This gives your body a chance to recover and stops drinking becoming part of the daily routine. It can also help you save money and lose weight.”

Dr Andy Withers, clinical chairman of the NHS Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Group, says alcohol is in the same cancer-causing category as tobacco and asbestos.

“It increases the risk of at least seven different types of cancer – including bowel, mouth, liver and breast cancer,” he added.

“There are a number of ways this happens. Alcohol can increase the levels of certain hormones in the body, including oestrogen. And high levels of oestrogen can fuel the development of breast cancer.

“Although age and family history are the biggest risk factors, drinking over the recommended levels will significantly raise the risks.

“Thankfully breast cancer survival is improving – it has doubled in the last 40 years in the UK – but we simply can’t ignore the rising rates of diagnosis, including more women under 50.

“The Spot of Lunch campaign aims to further increase awareness of the issue and help people keep their risks low by encouraging them to drink within the recommended guidelines of 14 units of alcohol per week for both men and women.”