Red meat, processed food increases risk for cancer, autoimmune disease

For every 50-100 g, colorectal cancer risk increases by 17-18%

RED meat and processed meat are linked to have a greater risk for bowel cancer.

The report from the World Health Organization recommends avoiding such foods with scientific data suggesting that every 50 grams of processed food, if consumed daily, may raise the chance of colorectal cancer by 18 percent, and 100 grams of red meat may increase the chance by 17 percent.

WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) reviewed more than 800 studies and identified sufficient evidence that high intake of processed meats is carcinogenic to humans.

“These results are important in enabling governments and international regulatory agencies to conduct risk assessments, in order to balance the risks and benefits of eating red meat and processed meat and provide the best possible dietary recommendations,” says Dr. Christopher Wild Director of the IARC.

Processed foods are defined by the US Food and Drug Administration as “any food other than a raw agricultural commodity and includes any raw agricultural commodity that has been subject to processing such as canning, cooking, dehydration or milling.” This also includes some cheese, breakfast cereals, canned fruits and vegetables, bread, savory snacks, bacon, and sausages.

In a similar report by Medical News Today, these processed foods are also associated in developing autoimmune disease, which occurs when the immune system attacks healthy cells in the body, mistaking them for foreign invaders, and leading to damage body tissues, abnormal growth and function.

They identified at least seven food additives namely glucoes, gluten, sodium, fat solvents, organic acids, nanometric particles and microbial transglutaminase (an exzyme used as a food protein “glue”), the reason why tight junctions in intestine weakens. Vanessa Estinozo with a Medical News Today report

Vital Signs Issue 83 Vol. 4, January 1-31 2016