Processed Meats: Same Cancer Risk Category as Tobacco

A new study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) for the World Health Organisation has placed processed meats in the highest category of cancer risk alongside smoking, alcohol and asbestos.

The WHO estimates that diets high in processed meats like bacon and sausages cause 34,000 cancer deaths per year worldwide. Even unprocessed red meats are considered a group two carcinogen. The report said that each 50g portion of processed meat eaten per day increases the risk of colorectal cancer by 18%.  For red meat, each 100g per day probably increases the risk by about 17%.

According to the Cancer Society of New Zealand “The IARC is funded by the World Health Organisation and is affiliated with numerous international cancer organisations. It is widely regarded as providing the “gold standard” verdict on whether an agent is carcinogenic.”

“The health risks of a meat-heavy diet have been known for many years” says Hans Kriek. “But this new study from the WHO cements the information for good: meat is deadly for animals, and us.  As if the threat of cancer wasn’t bad enough: animals on modern farms are treated like production units, their lives full of misery.”


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28 October 2015