Beware of cancer-causing foods

Today, cancer is the subject of widespread fears and taboos. There are thousands of scientific studies on the subject with alarming facts. No wonder that we are getting more concerned about cancer-causing factors, especially in the food we eat. Let’s take a closer look at our daily menu that could be causing such a huge number of new cancer patients.

Processed meats

Do you know that the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) at the World Health Organization classifies processed meat as a Group 1, carcinogenic to humans, since it has found sufficient evidence that consumption of processed meat by humans causes colorectal cancer? An increased intake of red and processed meat appears to increase the risk of death from cancer, heart disease and other diseases.

What are processed meats?

Meat which has been modified in order either to improve its taste or extend its shelf life by salting, curing, fermentation, smoking or other methods is called processed meat. The list of processed meats is long, just to mention a few: bacon, ham, hotdogs, sausages, salami, corned beef, beef jerky, canned meat and meat-based sauces.

Why processed meat causes colorectal cancer

The reasons why processed meat increases the risk of colorectal cancer have been under intense investigations. Some possibilities include:

  • Smoking: Smoking has been used for thousands of years to preserve foods like meat and fish. Smoking exposes meat or fish to the smoke of a wood or charcoal fire. The foods absorb large amounts of the tar that comes off the smoke. These tars contain cancer-causing compounds.
  • Cooking temperature: High temperature (such as deep pan frying or grilling directly over an open flame) plays a crucial role in forming carcinogens. Cooking meat until very well done produces heterocyclic amines (HCA) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), which have been found to be mutagenic – they cause changes in DNA that may increase the risk of cancer.
  • Chemicals that are formed when the meat is digested or processed: Just think – what colour meats have when you cook them in your kitchen. Have you ever seen red meat after boiling or cooking it in an oven? So, to keep processed meat looking nice on the shelves and to preserve it nitrates are added. Nitrates are converted to nitrites in the stomach. Nitrites contribute to the formation of cancer-causing N-nitroso compounds.
  • Dietary heme iron: Red meat contains higher amounts of heme iron than white meat. It also promotes the formation of cancer-causing N-nitroso compounds.
Farmed salmon

Do you know that over 60% of the salmon consumed in the USA is farm raised? Farmed salmon is fed unnatural artificial diets and is contaminated with environmental pollutants, harmful metabolic by-products, antibiotics, pesticides, cancer causing dioxins, agrichemical residues of GMO corn- and soy-based feed, and other harmful substances. Moreover, special chemicals are added to the “menu” to make salmon meat that reddish pink colour that should occur naturally but doesn’t because of the diet of chicken litter that they are fed. If you love salmon, look for the wild one.

Canned tuna

Tuna accounts for 45% of mercury in the US seafood supply. An independent testing by the Mercury Policy Project found that the average mercury concentration in canned tuna, especially canned albacore tuna, is far over the “safe limits”. Canned albacore tuna (also often called canned white tuna) it is not the same as canned light tuna. Canned light tuna contains other species of tuna such as skipjack, yellowfin, and tongol, which are relatively low in mercury.

So, be considerate and reasonable! The effects of these foods on your health depend on which ones you choose and how much you eat. The more you eat, the greater the risk. Moderating the consumption of harmful products is definitely a good idea.

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Please let us know how we can help. Whether it is a free no-obligation quote or just a question – we will be happy to provide you with detailed answers.

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