On Monday October 26, the World Health Organization revealed that the consumption of processed meat is linked to Colon Cancer. Although this finding is not entirely new, the International Agency for Research on Cancer has now placed processed meat in the Group 1 list as carcinogenic. This new Group 1 classification is due to sufficient research results on colorectal cancer. Other sources on the Group 1 list include diesel fumes, asbestos and tobacco, which means processed meat consumption can be equally as likely to cause cancer as smoking.
What Classifies as Processed Meat?
Processed meat can be defined as meat preserved by smoking, curing, salting, addition of chemical preservatives or other processes to enhance flavour and preservation.
Examples include: bacon, canned meat, jerky, smoked meat, hot dogs and sausage
How Prevalent is Colon Cancer?
One of the research departments at IARC has estimated, “ the risk of colorectal cancer increases by about 18 percent for every 50 gram portion eaten daily”. Colon Cancer isn’t the only risk factor involved. Stomach Cancer is also associated with processed meat intake and is becoming more prevalent recently.
According to IARC, about 34,000 deaths from cancer per year are associated to diets with a high intake of processed meat. Studies have shown meat consumption is not only one of the leading causes of death in North America, but also Europe and Australia.
Aside from simply ingesting meat, the way we cook our food also contributes to an increased cancer risk. Using alternative cooking methods can make a tremendous difference. Most people prefer to use high heating methods to cook meat faster by means of grilling or pan-frying. High temperatures actually produce the highest amount of cancer causing chemicals. If you want to keep meat in your diet but need a healthier alternative try baking or slow roasting at lower temperatures. In fact, cooking meat at low temperatures for a longer period of time commonly makes for a more tender and juicier product.
The Link Between Red Meat and Colon Cancer
The term “red meat” refers to all meat appearing red in colour before it is cooked. The most commonly known sources of red meat are as follows; beef, veal, venison and lamb. Although red meat is an excellent source of protein and iron, evidence shows there is a probable increased risk of colon and pancreatic cancer as well. Scientists have even gone as far as to list it as a possible carcinogen.
Individuals who eat a higher amount of these items are shown to have a higher rate of colon cancer compared to those who eat lesser portion sizes. So what can you do to reduce your risk? Due to the fact red meat does provide nutritional benefits, it is recommended to simply reduce intake about 3 times per week or less. The serving size can range between 50-75grams or roughly the size of ones fist
How Can Colonics Help?
Colon Cancer is a complex disease simply because it is not onset by individual foods. Although the complexity of this disease does create difficulty in prevention, colonics is known to provide much benefit. Aside from processed and red meat other factors that can influence the risk of colon cancer are as follows:
- Poor Diet
- Sedentary Lifestyle
- Excessive Alcohol Consumption
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- Family History
All of these factors listed above can add to the accumulation of toxic matter in the colon. If we do not rid this matter out, overtime the putrefied waste can have harmful effects on our overall health overtime. The reason age plays a factor in the onset of Colon Cancer may not be just a number. The probable reasoning is linked to the amount of old/toxic waste the bowel accumulates over a person’s lifetime.
Keeping a clean colon promotes a healthy bowel as it rids the colon walls of encrusted fecal waste. A colon free of toxic matter also improves the absorption process in the body. This means people are able to better utilize the vitamins and minerals healthy foods provide when the toxins are not engulfing the colon. Some refer to colonics as a, “forgiveness of sin” for those who still chose to indulge on red and processed meats. Of course keeping a healthy diet is one of the best things we can do for our bodies, but we need to treat our bodies once in awhile. Taking part in colonics allows us to do so without feeling as guilty.
Posted by Meaghan Lafranca, M.Sc, Nutritionist, Colon Therapist