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“Processed Meat: Will It Kill You”

Headlines say regularly consuming a steak or a bacon sandwich raises your risk of heart disease and cancer. Bacon, hot dogs, sausage, deli meats, salami, corned beef, beef jerky and ham as well as canned meat and meat-based sauces and other processed meats are known to contain unhealthy preservatives and chemical additives.  Processed meat has been modified to either extend its shelf life or change the taste and the main methods are smoking, curing, or adding salt or preservatives. It is these additions which could be increasing the risk of cancer. However, World Health Organization (WHO) experts admit the cancer risk is “not yet fully understood”. According to WHO, every 50g of processed meat – fewer than two slices of bacon – increases the risk of cancer by 18%. Every 100g of red meat (an eight ounce steak is 225g) increases the risk by 17%, although the WHO admits there is limited evidence.

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