Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Bacon Worship: A bunch of bologna!

Meat and potato audiences get defensive when I present them the current science declaring bacon, yes, the quintessential all-American breakfast icon and sandwich condiment, is dreadful for the conservation of the health of the human temple. Well-meaning, yet na├»ve friends still jeer at my revulsion to pieces of preserved pork parts. You’d thought I’d run over Smokey, the family dog.

Seriously, it’s no joke, so please don’t kill the messenger. The dangers associated with cured meats aren’t pretty. The American Institute for Cancer Research says the lung cancer risk from processed meats is comparable to smoking ciggy butts. If you regularly eat cured meats, you’ll eventually end up needing to be cured yourself. Folks joke about and fiercely defend their misguided birthright to eat it till it oozes from every pore, but is it really ‘bacon love’ or greasy self-destructive denial for a fleeting moment of oral pleasure?

When informed of the dangers of eating smoked products, an intelligent, well dressed professional gentleman told me, “Well, you gotta die from something. So quit pooping in my punch bowl.” You need to wave the white flag and give up on this one, however, and simply love them with all your heart.

Curing meat as a method of preserving dates back more than hundreds of years and was used in almost every region of the world. Long before refrigeration could be used to keep meats free from the ill effects of unhealthy bacteria, the process of smoking or curing meat sufficed.

Unfortunately, as long as there have been cured meats, there have been health problems caused by this process. Ancillary epidemiologic studies show a higher diffusion of stomach and colon cancer in persons or communities eating frequently smoked meat or fish.

It’s no bologna: there’s no safe level of consumption, says The American Institute for Cancer Research. Unless you are fond of cancer, the study recommends avoiding all processed meats like bacon, ham, sausages, salami, jerky, lunch meats, prosciutto, and smoked salmon or lox.

Caveat Emptor my friends. Our friends at The American Institute for Cancer report the nitrates in smoked meats create adverse reactions for asthma and allergy sufferers, contribute to esophageal cancer, migraines, COPD, and stomach cancer. Oh boy.

Nitrates used to preserve color, meat fillers such as gluten, and preservative agents are potential cancer-causing agents. The un-holy, man-made chemicals in smoked animal parts contain lofty levels of tyamine that can trigger migraines and react dangerously with certain medications. Got hypertension? If you don’t and desire high blood pressure, cured meats are overloaded with sodium.

To further illustrate the insane proliferation of aberrant chemicals in our food supply, my jaw dropped with a thud recently reading a grocery store pre-made Sushi label listing carbon monoxide as a color-preservative: insane on any level. If you’ll excuse the pun, after reading it I was ‘exhausted’.

How could this be allowed to happen to a loyal, trusting, patriotic citizenry of the greatest country on earth? The love of money, extended shelf-life, aesthetics, and soulless corporate Fat Cats who brand us ‘’The Little People” and who are acceptable losses in their at-all-cost pursuit of the almighty dollar.

Americans don’t deliberately eat poorly, they just do; it’s all they know. Safeguard your loving family, since there’s no doubting the scientific validity. Anyone who disagrees is either working for the meat industry, hopelessly behind the times with their nutritional IQ, or has a death wish.

Be compassionate with yourself; your body is your buddy.

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