Meat your maker: Ham, sausages cause cancer, steak also suspect, says long-awaited UN report
The UN has finally come out with a verdict on meat, with a report indicating that processed meat like sausages, bacon and ham can cause cancer, with red meat also under suspicion.
The Monday report issued by WHO is set to once again heat up the ongoing debate over the health dangers of a carnivorous diet. The document was released with data from the WHO-operated and France-based International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).
Its research now says there is “sufficient evidence” to include processed meat into group 1, the same as tobacco, asbestos and diesel fumes – all highly carcinogenic.
Experts concluded that each 50 gram portion of processed meat eaten daily increases the risk of colorectal #cancer by 18%— WHO (@WHO) October 26, 2015
The study connects the foods to bowel cancer, with pancreatic and prostate cancers high in the running.
"For an individual, the risk of developing colorectal (bowel) cancer because of their consumption of processed meat remains small, but this risk increases with the amount of meat consumed," Dr. Kurt Straif, head of IARC’s Monographs Program, said in a statement.
Despite what you'll read, the WHO is categorically *not* saying eating processed meat is as bad as smoking pic.twitter.com/Wf1CBOepWV— James Ball (@jamesrbuk) October 26, 2015
Research is ongoing. Red meat like beef, lamb and pork continue to be hotly debated, but have now been classified as “probable” carcinogens, which is classed as 2A, a group that also includes chemicals found in weed killers.
The category below is reserved for suspected carcinogens for which there’s “limited evidence.”