Are bacon, ham, sausages, salami and beef jerky among your favourite food? If yes, then probably you may have to say no to them and change your diet plan as scientists say that eating processed meat may increase the risk of developing breast cancer.
Researchers at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in the US say that studies on red and processed meat consumption with breast cancer risk have generated inconsistent results. The new study examined all published studies on the topic.
The analysis, published in the international Journal of Cancer, compared the highest to the lowest category in the 15 studies and concluded that processed meat consumption was associated with a nine per cent higher breast cancer risk.
“Previous works linked increased risk of some types of cancer to higher processed meat intake, and this recent meta-analysis suggests that processed meat consumption may also increase breast cancer risk... Therefore, cutting down processed meat seems beneficial for the prevention of breast cancer,” said Maryam Farvid from the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.
The researchers, however, did not observe a significant association between red (unprocessed) meat intake and risk of breast cancer. Two studies evaluated the association between red meat and breast cancer stratified by patients’ genotypes regarding N-acetyltransferase 2 acetylator.
Differences in activity of this enzyme are thought to modify the carcinogenic effect of meat. The researchers did not observe any association among patients with either fast or slow N-acetyltransferase 2 acetylators.
(With PTI inputs)