Monday, October 26, 2015

33% of My Meals are Cancer Causing

That's the thought that kept going through my head hearing the news story first on BBC World News and then on the drive home on National Public Radio.  Red meat and processed meat most certainly are carcinogens.  I started doing mental exercises in my head about the food I and my loved ones have been eating, and estimate for the four of us, not counting DD#1 who is a vegetarian, and off setting DH's over 33% consumption to DD#2's under consumption, and estimating DS and me are at about the same red meat to processed meat ratio, and I came up with 1 in three meals eaten fit this scary mess. According to the World Health Organization, just 50 grams a day, which is a couple pieces of bacon or maybe a hot dog, extra can raise chances of getting colon cancer to 18%, and the barbecuing effect such as at a summer picnic or grill restaurant expedites the risk. Processed meats also amplify-that grilled hot dog is getting more menacing with each word I type. You can read or listen here in the UK report or here for the Americanized version. 

Here are some of my families culprits in recent weeks:
  • Chipotle steak and  barbacoa tacos and burritos on vacation-twice
  • Grilled steak medallions for DH, Hot Hoagie with pepperoni, salami, and ham for me at a family dinner out last night with DH's mother
  • Meat lovers pizza-yes, with pepperoni and sausage 
  • Steak Fajitas' on the wine club cruise Saturday night
  • sausage gravy over biscuits grilled hamburgers-home and on vacation, big fat 1/4 pounders
  • Beef stick snack for DD#2 after a race
This is what I can remember.  While I shouldn't be shocked, I thought all things in moderation.  Who would have thought moderation is so little though.  It is time to truly use these meats as the side dish and not the main course.  Here is a perfect motivator to try and engage my family, all of us, in more vegetable based meals. 

 I came across two packages of butternut chipotle ravioli at Aldis's for $1.99 a bag.  It looks like a generous three servings.  I have it bubbling in the oven with a low fat mushroom white sauce.  I have 1/2 a large bag of mixed veg to make with it, and the last of a french bread loaf.  I'm hoping it tastes as good as it sounds. 

I have the ingredients for a black bean, corn, and tomato past salad for supper and or lunches.  I'll mix that up tonight.  We have an abundance of pears and peaches and low fat cottage cheese as well for sides to get a bit more protein with the beans. I haven't gotten beyond tonight and tomorrow with my planning.  something with chicken, and probably something with ground beef-but cut what I might usually use by 1/4 to keep our portion per person to about 2-3 ounces.  I worry though that DH will supplement what he doesn't get for supper with fast food burgers at lunch.  Help me out readers.  What are your go to, no red meat, low red meat, no processed-low processed meals, but on a budget?  Who else hears or reads stories like this goes into part panic-part diet ninja mode?


  1. I also read that story online. I only eat red meat once per week. I only eat stew or meatloaf. No steak or hamburger. I love bacon and sausages alot. I am going to start using turkey bacon (after reading the ingredients) and using turkey ground meat in my soup I love. My dh loves his red meat so I need to go slow with him. Chicken for him once a week (he hates chicken), fish once a week, pork chops not sausage, and some red meat for him. I feel unless I eat only veggies (can't eat much carbs I am a diabetic) I am not eating right. Cheryl

    1. I can get my husband to eat better if I make a truly delicious dinner that he feels satisfied after eating. I just worry though what he eats when I am not the meal prepare, so having a good heat and eat leftover is needed too. I think more turkey products are a great solution. Thanks for commenting and the nudge!

  2. These proclamations by the WHO will have all the health Nazis out in force judging us unwashed masses and giving them fuel to regulate what we are allowed to eat.

    Whatever happened to freedom in this country?!
    If someone wishes to eat bacon, burgers and hot dogs 3 meals a day, let them, as long as they realize this extreme eating choice will hasten their dropping dead of a stroke/heart attack/cancer at an early age.
    It's their choice and if it gives them pleasure during their time on this earth, so be it.

    Experts change their "expert" pronouncements like we change our underwear.
    One year we should all avoid ALL our foods get loaded up with salt and/or sugar to compensate for the fat. Then we eat too much sugar so we have to stop eating that or get diabetes. Then some fats(natural fats)are ok. Then all carbs are bad......or only complex carbs. And on and on and on.

    Having lived this long and having gone through various food charts/how much of what to eat(now it's a pyramid but it was a circle back when I was a kid....or was it a rectangle?lol)I don't get myself worked up over anything the "experts" say anymore.

    Be moderate in your eating watching your caloric intake.
    There is no one size fits all both in swimsuits or eating.
    Eat what you like and what makes your body feel at it's best.

    If you need/want hot dogs/bacon, find a healthier alternative like no nitrites/low sodium or turkey bacon or dogs if it makes you feel better.
    Moderation.....don't give up what you like, just find a better form of it.

    Something is going to kill us all at some point.
    Don't live your life by listening to so called "experts" and following their advise solely, disregarding of your own inner voice which knows what is best for YOU. 8-)

    1. Yes, but my inner voice always says "Go for the bacon.". I don't want to be part of the food police, but I don't want to ignore science either and if I think about it, too much meat makes me feel a bit bogged down. I think as you hint that someone will make this marketing fodder for some ridiculous food trend.

  3. I try to be a little jaded when I hear "the Experts" because they contradict each other all of the time. I am more worried about the additives, genetic modifications, supplements and hormones our government allows in our food supply. Can you say lobbyists?

    1. I am aware to no end about lobbyists! DH's cousin is on a crusade against the additive food market and I regularly get input on what company is latest big money villain. Scary though that fruit, veg, nuts and grains have issues too.

  4. Several months ago when I found out I am allergic to beef, I already ate little beef, mostly chicken. I found ground pork at Publix that is cheaper and leaner than ground beef. I eat about a half pound of bacon each month. So, I am okay there. My father and his mother died of pancreatic cancer. For many years I have know that processed meat has been implicated in pancreatic cancer, so I have eaten hot dogs, bologna and bacon in moderation.

    Your concern about your family's health and change in meals is commendable. You probably will not cause the family to eat the best, but any little improvement will help their future health.

    1. It does seem like moderation is key. Of course we all will die of something but I'd rather it not be from a retched infliction that might have been mitigated. I don't know if I've ever bought ground pork but will give it a try.


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