Red Meat Linked to Colorectal Cancer Risk

Smoking affects women, diabetics and cancer patients differently.A recent study provides “convincing evidence” that eating too much red, processed meat could raise your risk of colorectal cancer. The international research team found evidence that:

  • Red meat, processed meat, excess body fat and fat carried around the wait increase risk of colorectal cancer
  • Regular physical activity reduces risk of colorectal cancer
  • Foods containing dietary fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans, reduce risk of colorectal cancer; garlic probably does too.
  • Alcohol increases colorectal cancer risk in men. For women, it probably increases risk.

Furthering these findings, the report also suggests that an individual who eats 3.5 ounces of red meat every day has a risk of colorectal cancer that is 17 percent higher than an individual who eats no red meat. Doubling the red meat consumption to 7 ounces a day also doubles the percentage of increased risk to 34 percent. For those who only consumed 18 ounces or less of red meat there was no increase in colorectal cancer risk.

Similar to red meats, processed meats (like bacon, ham, and sausage) have also been linked to increase colorectal cancer risk; eating 3.5 ounces of processed meat every day raises the risk of colorectal cancer 36 percent compared to those who eat no processed meats.

Among cancers affecting both men and women, colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death in the United States.

+ Find out your colorectal cancer risk with our online assessment.
+ Learn more about The Bon Secours Colorectal Cancer Center.

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