If you drink alcohol, you’ve probably seen — or ignored — warning labels on the backs of bottles.

But those labels haven’t been updated since the late 1980s. Now, researchers say they haven’t adequately addressed the biggest health consequences of alcohol consumption: cancer, including breast cancer.

In perspective Text In the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers warn that despite the burden of alcohol consumption on public health, the labels are outdated and unclear about the dangers of alcohol consumption.

Few Americans know enough about those dangers, write, point out Data This shows that 70 percent of people do not realize that drinking alcohol increases their risk of cancer.

Sorry wine lovers. No amount of alcohol is good for you, says study.

Although moderate use is dangerous, excessive alcohol use is more dangerous. Instructions Alcohol consumption should be two drinks or less per day for men and one or less per day for women, but the information He points out Most adult drinkers imbibe more.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Assumptions Excessive alcohol consumption each year Life is shortened. Among those who died on average 26 years, and in 2019 alone, 140,000 died from alcohol abuse. Long-term heavy drinking can cause or worsen health problems such as liver disease, cancer and heart disease, mental health problems and high-risk pregnancies. Short-term binge drinking contributes to car crashes and suicides. CDC Features Among adults between the ages of 20 and 64, 1 in 10 die from alcohol.

All of these are good reasons to strengthen warning labels on beer, wine and spirits, the researchers wrote.

Although all alcohol should carry health warning statements Act of 1988The current label, which warns against drinking while pregnant or driving, “lacks key elements of an evidence-based warning design,” the researchers said.

Larger text, more prominent placement on bottles and graphic elements would help, and they suggest updating the warning language.

The researchers consider barriers to implementation, from legislation to industry lawsuits. But even if the new labels have little impact on overall consumption, they write, “We believe Americans deserve the opportunity to make well-informed decisions about their alcohol consumption.”

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