When you’re tucking into your favorite foods do you ever think about what harm it could be doing to your body? Probably not. Of course, a lot of us think about the fat or salt content, maybe even the calories, but none of us think the foods we eat every day could cause us cancer. You may be surprised to learn that a lot of the common foods we enjoy tucking into carcinogens; an agent which is directly involved in causing cancer. We thought it would be a good idea to look at which foods can cause cancer, in order to make people think twice about tucking in without knowing the facts.
What?! Fruit is supposedly healthy, so how can it cause cancer? Well, actually, unless you buy organic fruit then you could be damaging your health more than you realize. Fruit that isn’t organic is generally doused in a ton of pesticides and high nitrogen fertilizers, which are toxic to humans as well as pests. Atrazine is a commonly used pesticide which has been banned in some countries, but is still being used in places such as the US. Research has shown that pregnant women consuming this chemical had babies with reduced body weights; which just goes to prove how dangerous the chemical can be. All the chemicals and hormones used to make fruit and veggies bigger, are also pretty dangerous for your health. By ingesting so many toxins you could easily be increasing your chances of contracting cancer. Avoid the cheap fruit and veggies in your local store and go organic instead.
Most of us use vegetable oils in all of our cooking, especially those which are hydrogenated oils. Whilst we may be happily dousing our healthy food in these oils, we could be increasing our risk of cancer. The oils can influence the structure and flexibility of our cell membranes, even causing genetic mutations, which we know is linked to cancer. A lot of processed foods are also covered in vegetable oils in order to keep them fresh, so you’re not safe with those ready meals either. Vegetable oils also contain high levels of Omega-6 fatty acids, which are definitely not as good for you as their healthier cousin; Omega-3. In fact, these fatty acids have been linked to a number of health problems, including heart disease and cancer. Try to avoid vegetable oils where possible and opt for healthier versions, even olive oil, when you can. Also avoid processed foods containing hydrogenated oils.
You know that pretty pink look that processed meat has? Well, that is actually caused by a chemical and isn’t the natural color of the meat at all. In fact, all processed meats contain a whole host of chemicals and preservatives, which could be linked to cancer. In a 13 year study researchers found that those who consumed 160g or more of processed meat increased their risk of early death by up to 44%. However, those who eat less than 20g had much of a lesser risk within a 12 year period. The study was carried out in 10 European countries, with thousands of people taking part for the full 13 years. One of the biggest killers in processed meats, however, is the sodium nitrate which we know is packed with carcinogens. Smoked meat is the worst, as it will also pick up tar which can be as dangerous as consuming it through smoking cigarettes.
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