Alcohol and Pancreatic Cancer: Pancreatic Cancer Risk

Are drinking alcohol and pancreatic cancer related? In a word, no. Alcohol does not increase the risk of cancer of the pancreas.

I. Alcohol and Pancreatic Cancer

Medical opinion is that drinking alcohol is not a risk for cancer of the pancreas. That’s the judgment of these medical groups.

    • Nat Cancer Inst.
    • Nat Institute of Health.
    • Am Soc of Clinical Oncology.
    • Am Cancer Soc.
    • Cancer Res UK.
    • Pancreatic Res Cent at Johns Hopkins U.

And the list goes on and on.

alcohol and pancreatic cancer


Many of the research studies have been very large. For instance, researchers studied 478,400 people. They were in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). Researchers followed them for an average of about nine years. They found no link between drinking alcohol and pancreatic cancer risk.

Doctors in the U.S. followed 136,593 men and women. They did this for 12 to 16 years. They found that having two or more drinks per day did not increase the risk of pancreatic cancer. That was in comparison to those who did not drink any alcohol. Two or more drinks per day is over twice the U.S. government recommended limit for women.

Drinking alcohol is not a risk factor for pancreatic cancer. On the other hand, moderate drinking leads to better health and longer life. That’s in comparison to either abstaining from alcohol or drinking abusively.

II. Moderate Drinking

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) has described drinking in moderation. For men it’s having two drinks per day. And for women it’s having one drink daily.

alcohol and pancreatic cancer
Standard Drinks

Standard drinks have the same amount of pure alcohol. It’s 0.6 of an ounce.

No form of alcohol has greater health benefits than any other. So beer, wine, and liquor (spirits) are equally good for health. And for long life.

III. Resources 

Books for patients
DVD Video

Understanding Pancreatic Cancer. You are not Alone.