Over the last couple of decades, we have reviled certain foods as foods that cause cancer or are carcinogenic. So which are the worst culprits? Read through to find out.
Your health is your most prized asset, and your diet plays a huge role in it. You most likely have a general idea of foods you should eat – fruits, whole grains, vegetables, fish – but what about what not to eat?
This guide is filled with 10 ‘don’t eat’ foods that are potentially carcinogenic.
Worst Foods That Cause Cancer
Below are 10 foods that cause cancer you should avoid.
1. Canned tomatoes
Cans of food are often lined with bisphenol-a (BPA), a chemical associated with cancer and other grave health problems.
Since they’re so acidic, tomatoes are likely to leech terrifying levels of BPA from the can walls into the food. Eat more fresh tomatoes to prevent contamination.
Although moderate intake can reduce your risk of heart disease as alcohol abuse is a leading cause of cancer only second to tobacco use.
A meta-analysis of cancer risk and drinking showed a link between excessive drinking and an increased risk of colon, liver, mouth, and other cancers.
3. Mass-produced Bread
Potassium bromate, an additive used to increase the elasticity of bread dough, has been identified as a carcinogen by different health organizations and banned in the UK, Canada, the EU, and Brazil.
In California, a warning label is required for products with this compound, which is most times listed as brominated flour.
4. French fries and potato chips
Acrylamide, a compound used in some industrial processes, also present in cigarette smoke, can collect in starchy foods such as potatoes when cooked at high temperatures.
More study is required as the American Cancer Society backs the continued analysis of acrylamide and its effects.
5. Grilled Food
Grilled Food is a healthy and delicious type of food. However, it is probably carcinogenic. The high temperatures at which it is cooked make it more likely to contain carcinogens.
Some research has revealed that grilling meat can increase the likelihood of breast, colorectal, and prostate cancer. You should be aware of the possible risks involved with grilled food and be more cautious while preparing it.
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6. Hydrogenated oils
In addition to not being good for your heart, hydrogenated oils could cause cell damage and inflammation that has been associated with cancer and other diseases.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration partially banned hydrogenated oils in 2015, giving food manufacturers three years to take them off their products.
Pasta, and other “white” carbohydrates like bagels have a high glycemic index (GI), which means they raise blood sugar levels fast.
A recent study revealed that people whose diets contain high GI food had a 49% risk of having lung cancer.
Adding protein and healthy fat sources like olive oil to pasta helps reduce its overall glycemic index. You need not be afraid of pasta though, as some pasta has a low glycemic index.
8. Microwave popcorn
Certain bags used in making microwave popcorn are lined with a compound that decomposes to produce perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). PFOA is associated with an increased risk of prostate, liver, and other cancers.
Diacetyl, a compound used in artificial butter flavor, could cause lung damage. To curb this, should try using a brown paper bag and some coconut oil to make your own microwave popcorn.
9. Charred meat
Meat that is cooked in very high heat and that is charred or burnt has been associated with cancer. This is because certain carcinogenic chemicals called HCAs and PAHs are created by the high temperature.
As an alternative, low-heat methods like baking should be used when cooking animal protein. Moist heat methods such as braising or stewing could also be used.
These cooking methods do not increase the temperature high enough to burn or char the meat to create those carcinogenic compounds.
10. Farm Fish
It is a fact that farm fish are usually treated with pesticides and antibiotics which are carcinogenic. Farm fish are also given chemically synthesized foods, so they grow quickly.
These chemicals could be harmful and carcinogenic. When next you crave fish, ensure it is wild-caught before you eat.
The safest way to reduce the risk of developing cancer is to stay active and healthy while also avoiding the foods that cause cancer.
As with all terminal diseases, early detection of cancer is key to its treatment. So consult your doctor or go for a checkup if you notice any symptoms.