Processed Meats Like Bacon Are Revealed to Cause Cancer

Bacon is a staple in many people's households. It's a beloved processed meat we eat alongside our eggs in the morning, between bread in our lunchtime sandwiches, and sprinkled into our veggies for a savory kick at dinnertime. But, according to The World Health Organization, it's a complete detriment to our health. Science says bacon might be causing you cancer. The WHO has declared that processed meats, including bacon, sausages and hot dogs, cause cancer. Moreover, they say that red meats like beef, pork, veal and lamb are most likely carcinogenic to humans as well. The findings come from 22 scientists who reviewed the linkage of consuming red meat and processed meat to cancer. What they discovered was that eating these caused an increase in the risk of colorectal cancer. The evidence regarding this topic was published in The Lancet. How much so do these meats cause cancer? Let's put it this way: they were put in the same category as tobacco smoking and asbestos, however, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, notes that this doesn't necessarily mean they're just as dangerous. A Q&A by IARC said that, while eating meat does indeed have health benefits, it should be considered a food eaten minimally. And how it is cooked is a factor as well. The IARC noted that high-temperature cooking causes a greater production of carcinogenic compounds. The group, however, says that not enough data was collected "to reach a conclusion about whether the way meat is cooked affects the risk of cancer." American Cancer Society member Susan Gapstur says "consuming a healthy diet with an emphasis on plant foods and limiting consumption of processed meat and red meat," which is a recommendation backed by research from a colorectal cancer study from the World Cancer Research Fund, published in 2011. The research found that there was a 16 percent increase in this type of cancer in relation to the consumption of  3.5 ounces of red and processed meat consumed a day. But with all that cancer talk, The Lancet paper notes that "high biological-value proteins and important micronutrients such as B vitamins, iron and zinc" are present in red meat, while the North American Meat Institute explains that there is research-backed proof that there are benefits of eating red meat. Barry Carpenter, president of the North American Meat Institute says, "Scientific evidence shows cancer is a complex disease not caused by single foods and that a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle choices are essential to good health." Carpenter continues to say. "IARC's panel was given the basic task of looking at hazards that meat could pose at some level, under circumstance, but was not asked to consider any off-setting benefits, like the nutrition that meat delivers or the implications of drastically reducing or removing meat from the diet altogether." Do you eat meat regularly? What are your thoughts on these findings? Source: NPR

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