Processed meat is widely consumed all across the world. This easy to cook, affordable form of meat has become extremely popular. However, like everything has a flip side, the grey side of processed meat will shock you. A recent meta-analysis suggests that processed meat could be associated with the increased risk of breast cancer. The 15 studies included in the analysis concluded that the consumption of processed meat could increase your risk of having breast cancer by 9 per cent. Also, did you know that Salamis, Hot Dogs and Other Processed Meats Can Cause Mania?

However, there was no significant association seen between the unprocessed red meat and the risk of breast cancer. The Lead author Dr Maryam Farvid of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health suggested that it is beneficial to cut down the consumption of such processed meat.

This is not the first time the ill-effects of processed meat has come in the spotlight. The processed meat has also been associated with various other side-effects. Any kind of processed food has earned a bad name for all the right reasons. There have been multiple studies that prove that processed meat isn't good for health as they contain harmful chemicals that aren't otherwise present in fresh meat. It is better that you avoid processed meat like Sausages, salami, hot dogs, Bacon, Salted and cured meat, Dried and Canned meat, etc.

Here are some of the harmful effects of processed meat apart from breast cancer.

  1. High blood pressure (hypertension)- Processed meat has been associated with high blood pressure because it is rich in sodium chloride(Table salt).
  2. Heart disease- The excessive salt, as well as the concoction of other chemicals and preservatives, may increase your risk of having heart disease by 42 per cent.
  3. Diabetes- Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health believe that your chances of having diabetes increases by 19 per cent due to the consumption of processed meat because it has been smoked, cured, or salted.
  4. Bowel and stomach cancer- All the chemicals like Nitrite, Heterocyclic Amines (HCAs) etc. have and adverse effects on your bowel and stomach and increases your risk of contracting cancer.
  5. Excessive salts- Apart from hypertension, excessive consumption of salt is linked with a host of other diseases. Processed meat products contain salt in large amounts that may be bad for your overall health.
  6. Nitrite, N-Nitroso Compounds and Nitrosamines- These compounds are relatively more in fried or grilled processed meat. They are added to enhance the colour, flavour and discouraging the formation of bacteria in it. However, they tend to adversely affect the body and take a toll on your health. They are considered carcinogens.

You must avoid consuming processed meat in the long run. Instead, opt for fresh meat that has its nutritional properties intact.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Oct 04, 2018 01:22 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website