Alcohol and Cancer campaign

3 July 2023

Alcohol and Cancer campaign The Dutch Digestive Diseases Foundation and the Dutch Cancer Society have launched a knowledge campaign about the relationship between alcohol and cancer as part of the Healthy Generation initiative. The aim of the ‘For Your Health?’ campaign is to share knowledge and create awareness: drinking alcohol increases the risk of 7 types of cancer. The campaign will be visible on TV and in cinemas.

Johan van de Gronden, director of the Dutch Cancer Society and chairman of Alcohol Prevention for the Healthy Generation, says: “Often there’s nothing you can do to prevent getting cancer. But in at least a third of cases, cancer is partly caused by an unhealthy lifestyle, including drinking alcohol. We believe it is of great importance that people are aware of this. With the ‘For Your Health?’ campaign, we want to point this out so that people can make informed decisions for themselves and future generations.”

Research from the Trimbos Institute earlier this year already showed that only 37% of Dutch people know that drinking alcohol can lead to cancer. This refers to an increased risk of oral, pharyngeal, laryngeal, oesophageal, breast, liver, and bowel cancer. For instance, the risk of breast cancer already increases with just one glass of alcohol per day. Every year, more than 4,000 Dutch people get cancer from alcohol.

Alcohol in our society is strongly associated with conviviality (54%) and relaxation (39%) and less so with being unhealthy (27%). Knowledge about the harm caused by alcohol is not widely enough known. People mainly think that drinking a lot at once is unhealthy. According to only 46%, having a glass of alcohol every day is unhealthy to very unhealthy. 20% even think that it’s healthy. Fact is: there is no safe amount of alcohol. Both frequent and binge drinking is unhealthy.

The initiators want to launch more knowledge campaigns about other health effects of alcohol in the coming years.



Dutch Institute for Alcohol Policy STAP
P.O. Box 9769
3506 GT Utrecht
The Netherlands
T: +31 (0)30-6565041
F: +31 (0)30-6565043