Science is yet to discover the factors that cause pancreatic cancer although some studies have shown bacon and red meat may play a big role. They found that men who eat 2 strips of bacon or one sausage a day have a 19% higher chance of developing pancreatic cancer than the ones who don’t. The percentages jumped to 29% when they ate 120 gr. red meat daily.
Pancreatic cancer is a growing disease, with more than 49000 people to be diagnosed with it in 2015. As there are no early tests, pancreatic cancer kills more than any other cancer. 74% of pancreatic cancer patients will die within the first year, and just 7% of them will live more than 5 years.
Another study published in BMC Medicine in 2013 worked on disease rates in groups who ate poultry, red meat and processed meat. The research showed a strong link between the intake of processed meat and cardiovascular disease and cancer. The findings were not so strong for unprocessed red meat and poultry. Experts concluded that the processed meat is linked to mortality rates and that 3.3% of the deaths could have been prevented if less than 20 gr. of processed meat was eaten daily.
There is a key factor in these studies. It’s the nitrates which are added as a preservative in processed meat and which also give the meat a red color. Studies have shown that nitrates are linked to cancer, so this is an important factor given that bacon and other processed meats cause pancreatic and other cancers.
With the rising cases of cancers, science continues to look for culprits. The link between pancreatic cancer and processed red meats needs serious consideration. Then, reducing the risk of this type of cancer would be as simple as just paying attention to the food we eat.
While researchers agree that more studies need to be done to further confirm the link between pancreatic cancer and processed meat, it appears that already we have more than enough for start. A healthy diet goes a long way to support our body and health. Paying attention to what we eat and enjoying processed meat like bacon moderately can be an important part of our lifestyle.