Processed meats could lead to early death
Bacon. Sausage. Salami. Pastrami. Ham. Sounds like a heck of a platter, right? Unfortunately, new research piles on more evidence that eating a lot of processed meats isn’t good for your health, and may be a factor in people dying younger than they should. Published in BMC Journal, the study found that people who ate 160 grams of processed meat a day – or roughly two sausages and a piece of bacon – were 44 percent more likely to die early than those who ate 20 grams or less per day of processed meats.
The research involved analysis of the health and lifestyle habits of a half-million Europeans from 10 countries for an average period of 13 years. During that time, nearly 10,000 people died of cancer and 5,500 died of heart disease. In addition to dietary choices, those who ate processed meats were more likely to smoke, be obese and engage in other unhealthy behaviors. But even after controlling for these factors, processed meats consumption was found to be a factor in early deaths.
The lead researcher said that if everyone in the study had consumed no more than 20 grams of processed meats a day, roughly 3 percent of the premature deaths could have been prevented. The research did not suggest that people need to stopped eating processed meats, but rather that it’s important to consume it in moderation.