We all love meat or ham in our sandwiches, a delicious side of bacon, or burgers after a big game. We consume a large amount of meat as a nation and the numbers are increasing. According to the World Watch Institute based in Washington D.C, the consumption of red and processed meat has tripled over the last four decades and increased 20 percent in the last ten years. The North America Meat Institute states that an average person eats 182 pounds of meat per year, including poultry and fish.
But with the recent release by the WHO on Monday October 26 that having bacon could be the equivalent of smoking tobacco, many people will be re-thinking their processed meat consumption as it has been linked to cause pancreatic cancer and colon cancer. Processed meat is anything cured, smoked, dried or passed through any development to improve its texture, taste and flavor. It is no longer in its original state. This is on top of the fact that meat, such as beef is already raised with hormones pumped into the cow and fed an artificial diet for the cow to fatten up before the slaughter house.
22 scientist from the WHO conducted over 800 tests to prove processed meat as a class one carcinogen. The study has obviously sparked opinions from meat lovers around the world but mostly with the meat industry itself. Twitter users expressed opinions related to the consumption of processed meat. Some say that the risk of causing cancer, is in such a small percentile (6%) that they wouldn’t mind continuing their consumption. Others are considering limiting their intake to the three times a week rule suggested by the WHO, or deciding to eat a vegetarian diet.
The study has affected the way that people look at their meat because it puts pressure on the fact that what they are eating can cause a deadly disease. More people are shifting to consuming white meat instead such as chicken and fish. This has also brought the general public to start thinking more about what they are eating every day and whether or not it is making a positive contribution to their health.