Processed meat is meat transformed into other foods through curing, salting, smoking, fermentation, or other flavor-enhancing and preservation procedures. The majority of processed meat food products contain beef, pork, poultry, red meats, or blood.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has concluded that processed meat is carcinogenic to the human body. Processed meat products such as hotdogs and bacon are among the top contributors to colorectal cancer. Consuming processed meat can increase one’s risk of cancer by 18%.
Moreover, colorectal cancer is not the only type of cancer people who consume processed meat are at risk for. Men who are consuming 50gms of processed meat a day can have a higher risk for pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer, and general cancer mortality. On the other hand, women consuming 20gms of processed meat daily have a 21% risk for breast cancer.
Furthermore, people who consume substantial amounts of processed meat have a higher risk of death due to cardiovascular diseases based on a study by the National Institutes of Health of over 500,000 people. In addition to that, a study conducted by The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) found that processed meat consumption was tied to over 57,000 deaths in 2012 due to cardiometabolic diseases.