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Warning: Hot Dogs Increase Your Risk of Colon Cancer

Posted Nov 04 2009 10:06pm
I'm sure this is not coming as a shock, but having a too much processed or red meat is quite detrimental to your health. 

As of July 22, there was a class-action consumer-fraud lawsuit filed against hot dog manufacturers for failing to warn consumers about the increased cancer risk from hot dogs. The grounds for the suit are based off research published by The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) linking hot dog consumption and colon cancer. However, the AICR is taking a neutral position in regard to the suit and does not necessarily support having a law requiring a warning label.

Now for the factsAccording to the AICR, for every 50 gram serving (roughly equivalent to 1 hot dog) of processed meat, including hot dogs, cold cuts, ham, etc., eaten per day increases colorectal cancer risk by 21 percent. This means if you have one a hot dog every day, you have a 21 percent higher risk of colon cancer than someone who never eats hot dogs.

According to the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine Those who consumed cured meat 14 times a month were 78 per cent more likely to have COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) than those who ate none or very little.

The AICR does point out that while the risk is significant, it is around 8 times lower than the risk of lung cancer for a daily smoker. So, the point is that while there is evidence that hot dogs and processed meats put you at a higher risk for colon cancer, you can still enjoy them every once in awhile. If you moderate your intake and think of processed meats as more of a treat rather than a daily staple, this should help lower your risk.

More resources The Cancer Project release on hot dogs and processed meats.
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