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Breast cancer chances rise with daily alcohol consumption

A woman is seen being screened for breast cancer in this file photo.

March 30, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
A drink a day might help the heart, but could spell trouble when it comes to breast cancer.

A new study suggests even small amounts of alcohol may increase a woman's risk of breast cancer. The risk is small, just 4 percent for women who have one drink a day. But it jumps to 50 percent for those who have three drinks a day or more.

Researchers believe it's because alcohol affects a woman's estrogen production, and could increase cell damage.