Studies have shown that alcohol consumption is associated with many different types of cancers. The more alcohol a person drinks over time, the higher their risk of developing alcohol-associated cancer. Alcohol is linked to liver, colorectal and breast cancer, as well as cancers of the mouth, throat, voice box and esophagus. It can also increase the risk of pancreas and stomach cancer. Researchers say that alcohol affects cancer risk in several ways. For one, it acts as an irritant that damages body tissues. When cells try to repair themselves, alcohol leads to DNA changes that can lead to cancer. Alcohol also affects absorption of folate and other nutrients, estrogen levels and body weight, all of which can contribute to cancer growth.