Red meat and cancer!


Recently, we are all reading about the link between the red meat and cancer. But, is there a connection between those two?

The International Agency for Research on Caner recently has released a paper that claimed that processed meat causes cancer.

Here are the most important things in their paper

What is red meat?

It is the meat from goats, horse, lamb, mutton, pork, beef, and veal.

What is processed meat?

It is the meat that is transformed through curing, salting, smoking, and fermentation to improve preservation. Here are also frankfurters, hot dogs, ham, canned meat, etc.

Does cooking increase the carcinogenic effect of red meat?

High-temperature cooking such as pan-frying and barbecuing increase the carcinogenic ingredients in the red meat.

Red meat is carcinogenic – what is the meaning of this?

There is limited evidence that red meat is carcinogenic to humans. It belongs to group 2A – this means it is probably carcinogenic.

Processed meat is carcinogenic – what is the meaning of this?

Processed meat belongs to group A, which means carcinogenic to humans. There is evidence that prove the effect of the processes meat on humans.

Asbestos, tobacco, and processed meat are all in group 1, but they aren’t equally dangerous.

Even though they belong to the same group, they aren’t equally dangerous.

Which type of cancer does processed meat cause?

Processed meat has only been associated with colorectal cancer.

How does red and processes meat cause colorectal cancer?

  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons formed in the process of cooking
  • Heterocyclic aromatic amines formed in the process of cooking
  • Haemoglobin iron content

What is the risk of eating processed and red meat?

Eating more than 50 g. of processed meat per day, raises the risk of colorectal cancer by 18%. And 17% increased risk if you consume 100 grams of red meat per day.

Types of cancer

Processed meat cause colorectal cancer and not all types of cancer.

Red meat might cause colorectal cancer and not all types of cancer.

How does it cause colorectal cancer?

  • Haemoglobin transforms into a compound that cause DNA mutations.
  • High temperatures generate heterocyclic mines, that can damage the gut.
  • Iron oxidizes and damages the intestinal lining.
  • Trimethylamine N-oxide and Neu%Gc are also associated with colorectal cancer.

How much is too much? 

We should eat 70 g. of red and processed meat per day.

  • Eat smaller portion
  • Eat green vegetables with your meat
  • Eat more legumes and beans
  • Have some meat free-days during the week

You shouldn’t cut down the red meat completely, but you should definitely reduce the amount of it.



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