Italian Alcohol Society: “Alcohol favors cancer, virologists unacceptable controversy”

“Reduce consumption but no to prohibition, more information for the good of public health”

Ethanol and acetaldehyde in alcoholic beverages (wine, beer and spirits) promote cancer. For this reason it is unacceptable that the controversy on the effects linked to alcohol consumption involves doctors who, for deontological and ethical reasons, must adhere to scientific evidence”. Like this Gianni Testino, national president of the Italian Alcohol Society (Sia), returns to the latest controversy between virologists, who in recent days have clashed over the nectar of the gods. Object of dispute the debated Irish legislation equating alcohol with tobacco and calls for the inclusion of labels on health damage on bottles, even those of wine.

“After Ireland’s initiative, an irresponsible protest has exploded from producers and politicians of all stripes. It’s normal, the economy comes before health, but this controversy between virologists is unacceptable: we cannot invoke scientific evidence to alternating phases “, underlines Testino referring to the clash between the immunologist Antonella Viola and the director of infectious diseases of the San Martino hospital in Genoa Matteo Bassetti.

“Science – says the expert – says that vaccines are useful and indispensable to fight Covid-19 and also says that ethanol, the psychoactive substance at the base of wine, beer and spirits, is a carcinogen and as such is included in Group 1 of carcinogens In this group 120 substances/molecules are mentioned and they have a ‘certain causal relationship with cancer’. This group includes, for example, cigarette smoke and asbestos. Ethanol causes more cancers than pollution, but we can’t avoid pollution, while ethanol can. The effect is dose dependent.”

Testino, on behalf of the Italian Alcohol Society, in a note requests that even the “manufacturers indicate on the labels the amount of free acetaldehyde which is more or less present in all alcoholic beverages. The more there is, the more carcinogenic the product is”.

It is also good to “stop associating ethanol consumption with the well-being of certain organs such as the heart – Testino is keen to clarify -. It doesn’t give any benefit, but with the same dosages it favors cancer and two hundred other different diseases. This is not censorship, it is not prohibitionism as some say but it is simple and necessary information on a product that is consumed by millions of people”. For these reasons “we have a duty – he says – to reduce its consumption as much as possible, not prohibiting its sale, but through information. This message, inserted in a broader framework of education in correct lifestyles, must already be known by children and in this way the new generations will grow in awareness”.