Inability to Get Drunk & Cancer Risk Linked


The people who can drink for a long time without getting drunk should carefully monitor their health, habits, and diet. Scientists have linked the rate of intoxication and exposure to cancer of the oral cavity, pharynx, and larynx. It turned out that there is a relationship between them, which, as the researchers believe, is connected with the activity of the gene that determines the rate of alcohol intoxication.

The specialists from the University of Aberdeen in the UK undertook a large international study, in which the experts studied four thousand cases of cancer of the oral cavity, pharynx, and larynx among Europeans and Latin Americans. As you know, the representatives of these peoples have genetic characteristics in the metabolism of alcohol. Thus, the scientists were able to determine the specific role of the gene responsible for the body’s ability to metabolize alcohol.

As the physicians explained, today’s science knows many variations of the gene, encoding alcohol dehydrogenase – the enzyme responsible for breaking down alcohol. Intoxication depends on the variety of the gene inherited by a human – the more active the genetics is, the easier it is to metabolize alcohol and the more stable the people’s reaction to the state of intoxication is. In turn, people who lack this gene completely suffer from severe intoxication when using low quantities of alcohol.

The ability to quickly get drunk after taking even small doses of alcohol is extremely uncomfortable in everyday life, but the study showed that the people with this ability are less prone to tumors of the oral cavity, pharynx, and larynx. According to the experts, resistance to intoxication, on the contrary, increases the risk of these types of cancer because in this case the person is able to drink quite a sizeable amount of alcohol, and, therefore, its effect on the mucous membrane of these organs is longer.

The doctors believe this risk is particularly high if addiction to alcohol or tobacco is combined with a small amount of fruit and vegetables in the diet.