Reprinted with permission from Orthomolecular Medicine News Service
(OMNS July 2, 2010) More hot dogs are eaten at the 4th of July holiday than at any other time of the year. The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council (yes, an all-too-real trade organization) says that "during the Independence Day weekend, 155 million will be gobbled up" and that Americans will consume more than seven billion hot dogs over the summer. "Every year," they proudly proclaim, "Americans eat an average of 60 hot dogs each." (1)
That looks to be a modest average of just over one hot dog per week per American. But there are at least 7 million vegetarians in the US, and another 20 million who would be inclined to avoid meat. (2)
This means that even if you do not eat any hot dogs at all, someone else is eating your share.
But a hot dog or two a week? Big deal! Maybe it is.
- Children who eat one hot dog a week double their risk of a brain tumor; two per week triples the risk. Kids eating more than twelve hot dogs a month (three a week) have nearly ten times the risk of leukemia as children who eat none. (3)
And it is not just about kids. Of 190,000 adults studied for seven years, those eating the most processed meat such as deli meats and hot dogs had a 68 percent greater risk of pancreatic cancer than those who ate the least. (4) Pancreatic cancer is especially difficult to treat.
Think twice before you serve up your next tube steak. If your family is going to eat hot dogs, at least take your vitamins. Hot dog eating children taking supplemental vitamins were shown to have a reduced risk of cancer. (5) Vitamins C and E prevent the formation of nitrosamines. (6,7)
(3) Peters JM, Preston-Martin S, London SJ, Bowman JD, Buckley JD, Thomas DC. Processed meats and risk of childhood leukemia. Cancer Causes Control. 1994 Mar; 5(2):195-202.
(4) Nothlings U, Wilkens LR, Murphy SP, et al. 2005. Meat and fat intake as risk factors for pancreatic cancer: The Multiethnic Cohort Study. J Nat Cancer Inst 97:1458-65.
(5) Sarasua S, Savitz DA. Cured and broiled meat consumption in relation to childhood cancer: Denver, Colorado (United States). Cancer Causes Control. 1994 Mar; 5(2):141-8. Comment at http://www.ralphmoss.com/hotdog.htm.
(6) Scanlan RA. Nitrosamines and cancer. http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/f-w00/nitrosamine.html
(7) Cass H; English J. User's guide to vitamin C. Basic Health Publications, 2002, p 64-67. ISBN-10: 1591200210; ISBN-13: 978-1591200215.
(8) Smithsonian, July 1992, p 5.
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