Meat Consumption and Risk of Colorectal Cancer
WTO Trade Agreements Supersede U.S. Environmental Laws
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Bush's Envioronmental Record
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MERCURY EMISSIONS: environment & legislation
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Organic Farming Comparison
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Bush's Environmental Record--Al Franken
Pied Piper & Environmental Policy--Hightower
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Rabbits cruelly butchered, USDA regulation changed
Meat Consumption and Risk of Colorectal Cancer
LEAD SOLDER--environmental activitism at its worst

Meat consumption associated with an increase of the most common form of cancer at the rate of 14% per 100 grams—result of huge meta study.  daily increase of 25 g of processed meat was associated with a 49% increased risk (odds ratio 1.49, 95% confidence interval 1.22 to 1.81). Processed meat was defined as processed, cured or nitrate meat, or sausages.  Unfortunately only a few studies adjusted for confounding variable of other dietary habits, lifestyle, and genetic factors.    



Meat consumption and risk of colorectal cancer

Posted on Bandolier website at http://www.jr2.ox.ac.uk/bandolier/booth/hliving/meatcrca.html

The first issue of Bandolier, an independent journal about evidence-based healthcare, written by Oxford scientists, (RAM AND HJM) was printed in February 1994,


Clinical bottom line

An association was found between consumption of red meat, particularly processed meat, and risk of colorectal cancer, which corresponds with current advice to limit intakes of red meat and meat products.

Results from studies investigating meat consumption and risk of colorectal cancer have been inconsistent. The following meta-analysis investigates this relationship.


MS Sandhu et al. Systematic review of the prospective cohort studies on meat consumption and colorectal cancer risk: a meta-analytical approach. Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention 2001 10: 439-446.


The literature was searched using MEDLINE, Embase and Cancerlit until mid 1999. References from identified articles and literature reviews were examined. Investigators and authors were contacted for unpublished or missed research. Prospective cohort studies investigating meat consumption and colon or colorectal cancer incidence or mortality were included. Meat was defined as including red meat, lamb, beef, pork and processed meats (such as sausages, burgers, ham and bacon), but not including white meat. Excluded were case-control and ecological studies; studies that only classified people as eating meat or not; and early studies whose data had been subsequently re-analysed.

Thirteen papers were identified with a total of 601,133 participants and 3,617 cases. Initial age of participants ranged from 15 to 55 years and length of follow-up ranged from 3 to 24 years. All but one study assessed diet with food frequency questionnaires. Few studies adjusted for other diet, lifestyle or genetic factors. Twelve adjusted for age.


A daily increase of 100 g of meat was associated with a 14% increased risk of colorectal cancer (odds ratio 1.14, 95% confidence interval 1.04 to 1.25).

A daily increase of 25 g of processed meat was associated with a 49% increased risk (odds ratio 1.49, 95% confidence interval 1.22 to 1.81). Processed meat was defined as processed, cured or nitrate meat, or sausages.


Unfortunately, only a few studies examined the independent effect of meat consumption on the risk of colorectal cancer so the associations found here could be confounded by other dietary, lifestyle or genetic factors.


Nevertheless, the current UK recommendation is that consumption of red and processed meat should not increase for those consuming average levels (about 90 g a day for the UK population; 8 to 10 portions a week) and should decrease for those consuming high levels (above 140 g a day; 12 to 14 portions a week). The advice of the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) is to limit intake of red meat to below 80 g a day. This meta-analysis is in agreement with these recommendations which in essence, is to limit or reduce intakes of red meat. For those at higher risk (e.g. with genetic or other lifestyle factors) it may be wise to consider the WCRF's upper limit of 80 g/day; limit consumption of processed meat products in particular; and choose alternatives to red meat, such as poultry, fish, beans and pulses.


High consumption of red and processed meat may increase the risk of colorectal cancer in various ways, including the formation of carcinogenic agents. Heterocyclic amines are formed on the surface of meat when it is cooked in direct flame or at high temperatures. N-nitroso compounds are found in foods containing nitrates, or which have been exposed to nitrogen oxides, such as processed meats.


I am a bit skeptical about the results for processed meats.  For one reason, the usage of nitrites (which are converted in the digestive track to a significant carcenogen) is only a small fraction of what they used to be.  Thus studies done on the consumption of processed meats, where the nitrites are used as a flavoring, would be distorted because of preious much higher levels and the fact that the relationship to cancer takes decades to develop. 


I am bit skeptical about the results concerning red meats.  For if the study doesn’t adjust for contraveining variables, such as amount of fat in the diet (most carcinogens are fat soluble and are long lived in adopose tissues), exercise & toboacco, then the conclusions are misleading.  This is the criticism of the studies done of the Seventh Day Adventist, who are by creed vegaterians.  Their 2 years turns out is attributed to these factors rather than being vegetarians. 


Finally, whether or not these results stand (Adventist & Bandolier) is not critical, because we ought to be nice to animals by not eating them.  The vegetarian lifestyle promotes both health consciousness and a prohibition against violence.--jk

People get the government that they deserve. Politicans such as Bush are elected because if the common person was in office, he would become another venal politican