Bad news, ladies. The once socially acceptable drinking habits of women recently came under the spotlight at a conference on “Girls, Women and Alcohol” in Dublin, Ireland.
“How did we get here? How did we get from having cups of tea to slamming tequila shots at the bar?” Katherine Brown, director of the Institute of Alcohol Studies in the UK, asked.
Another speaker was Dr. Triona McCarthy, a consultant in public health medicine with Ireland’s National Cancer Control Programme. Women who consume even a small glass of wine every day increase their risk of getting the Big C—specifically breast cancer—by seven to 10 percent, she told the conference.
With statistics like that, experts in the field of women’s health are now asking gals to put the plug in the jug and stop telling themselves they are simply enjoying a harmless glass of wine or two (or four) at the end of a stressful day while simultaneously lowering their cholesterol (though the last part might be true).
How Not to Look Like Chelsea Handler
Here are some more cold, hard facts to chew on before you uncork the Cabernet: More than 40,000 women are expected to lose their battle with breast cancer in 2015 alone, and one in eight American women are estimated to develop breast cancer at some point in their life. I always figured that it doesn’t run in my family so I’m safe, right? Wrong. In fact, less than 15 percent of women who are diagnosed with breast cancer are related to someone who had it. Add a love of wine with dinner, being Caucasian and over 45 (African American are more likely to be diagnosed under 45) and you’ve got yourself into a high-risk category. Yup, it’s that simple.
While I’m not sure of the numbers, I would assume that the percentage of women who drink something alcoholic every day at the age of 45 is probably smaller than the number of 18 to 25 year-old women who do. If that’s the case, maybe African-American women should heed the warnings and just smoke weed instead.
I’m only half kidding. With the health risks, physical wear-and-tear and price of cab fare, it’s becoming increasingly more attractive for women of all ethnicities to do a few bong hits before a night out than it is to have a martini (although no one should be driving under the influence of anything). No matter how good Sex and The City made cosmos and strappy sandals look together, a girl better be ready to take those sit-down shoes to the streets and walk her drunk self home. Not just to keep the roads safe, but also to keep the booty in shape because enough vodka over a period of time and you could wake up looking like Chelsea Handler.
Cut the Cheese
And while no one likes to find out they have high cholesterol, I think what those experts at the conference in Ireland are telling us is that when it comes to drinking wine every day, we might need to pick our battles. So maybe you cut down on cheese and get a prescription for Lipator. It sure beats the very real alternative.