This study aimed to discuss the consumption of alcohol as a risk factor for major cancers. We performed asearch in the PubMed database, using the following inclusion criteria: meta-analysis published in English inthe last 10 years that addressed the relationship between alcohol and the risk of developing cancer. The resultsindicate that moderate to heavy consumption of alcohol increases the risk of developing cancer of the oral cavityand pharynx, esophagus, stomach, larynx, colorectum, central nervous system, pancreas, breast and prostate.This review did not find any association between alcohol consumption and an increased risk of cancers of thelung, bladder, endometrium and ovary. It was also observed that alcohol consumption may be inversely related tothyroid cancer. Our systematic review has confirmed consumption of alcohol as a risk factor for the developmentof several types of cancer.