Recent scientific studies have yielded substantial evidence concerning the health implications of consuming red meat. For example, a lot of studies commissioned by the World Health Organization (WHO) have associated red meat with certain types of cancer. Red meat includes various types of mammalian muscle meat such as beef, veal, goat and horse among others. Consequently, there is a broad array of literature covering this topic from various angles and viewpoints.
For example, in an article by Oostindjer et al., (2013) the authors expounded on the relationship between red meat as well as processed meat in the development of colorectal cancer. The paper is based on proceedings at a workshop that was held in Oslo, Norway in November 2013. The main focus of the paper is to determine if there can be a consensus among nutritionists on how red and processed meat can be made healthier. As such, the explores various recommendations that can help reduce the risk of contracting cancer from consumption of red and processed meat, with a specific focus on colorectal cancer (CRC). However, the authors note that there are many gaps in existing research on the topic, which makes it difficult to make any meaningful decisions (Oostindjer et al., 2013, p.490). Existing data and information in the subject seems to be inconsistent in varying degrees. Consequently, the authors recommend that more studies be conducted in the future to focus on illustrating the differences between red and white meat (Oostindjer et al., 2013, p.498). Furthermore, the authors recommend that there is need to focus on expounding on some strategies such as modifying the composition of meat through breeding and feeding ad improving the processing of meat by adding phytochemicals.
In another study by Cross, Leitzmann, Gail, Hollenbeck, Schatzkin, and Sinha (2007), the authors investigate whether increased consumption of red meat can increase the risk of contracting cancer. There is a strong association between red and processed meat with carcinogenesis at different anatomic sites. Through their comprehensive study, the authors concluded that consumption or red meat can positively be associated with increased risk of cancer, especially, lung and colorectal cancer for processed meat while red meat is mostly associated with cancer of the liver and esophagus.
Niclis, Roman, Osella, Eynard, and Diaz (2015) conducted a study in Argentina to determine whether the traditional dietary patterns in the region can increase the risk of prostate cancer. The authors established that the habit of consuming red meat was more linked with prostate cancer (Niclis, et al., 2015, p.8).
Lippi, Mattiuzzi, Cervellin (2015) postulate that ones dietary habits can either increase or decrease an individuals vulnerability to cancer. The authors conducted a critical review of findings from various studies in order to determine the association between meat consumption and the risk of cancer. Based on this analysis, the authors conclude that there is a strong association between cancer and consumption if lots of red meat while those who consume white meat do not show any positive association with cancer (Lippi, Mattiuzzi, Cervellin, 2015, p.10).
Cross AJ, Leitzmann MF, Gail MH, Hollenbeck AR, Schatzkin A, et al. (2007) A prospective study of red and processed meat intake in relation to cancer risk. PLoS Med 4(12): e325.
Lippi, G., Mattiuzzi, C., and Cervellin, G. 2015. Meat consumption and cancer risk: a critical review of published meta-analyses, Critical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology 1-14.
Niclis, C., Roman, M. D., Osella, A. R., Eynard, A. R., and Diaz M. 2015. Traditional Dietary Pattern Increases Risk of Prostate Cancer in Argentina: Results of a Multilevel Modeling and Bias Analysis from a Case-Control Study, Journal of Cancer Epidemiology,1-9.
Oostindjer et al., 2013. The role of red and processed meat in colorectal cancer development: a perspective, Meat Science, 583596.
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