The news is out… Processed meat can cause Cancer!
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the cancer research agency of World Health Organisation (WHO), has evaluated the cancer causing ability and tendency of consumption of red meat and processed meat.
The WHO website states that ‘A Working Group of 22 experts from 10 countries convened by IARC classified the consumption of red meat asprobably carcinogenic to humans and processed meat as carcinogenic to humans.’
What does this actually mean? Let’s break it down.
The IARC Monographs Programme has classified the following:
Red meat results
- The consumption of red meat as probably carcinogenic to humans
- Based on limited evidence: The consumption of red meat causes cancer in humans
- Based on strong mechanistic evidence: The consumption of red meat supports a carcinogenic effect
- Association were observed mainly for colorectal cancer, but also seen for pancreatic cancer and prostate cancer
Red meat translation
- Eating red meat has the potential to cause cancer in humans
- There is limited evidence that eating red meat can cause some cancers in humans
- There is strong physical evidence that eating red meat can cause some cancers
- The main caner that the above is associated with is colorectal cancer, and some were for pancreatic cancer and prostate cancer
Processed meat results
- Processed meat was classified as carcinogenic to humans
- Based on sufficient evidence in humans: The consumption of processed meat causes colorectal cancer
Processed meat translation
- Processed meat was classified as having the potential to cause cancer in humans
- There is sufficient evidence that eating processed meat causes colorectal cancer
The findings show once again that processed food is worse for humans than non-processed, and supports the current public health recommendation that people should limit the intake of meat.