Bad news for beef eaters this week

Kathleen Blanchard's picture
Beef is in the news this week and it isn't good

Earlier this week researchers suggested there may be a link between red meat consumption and risk of breast cancer. Just on the heels of that news release we find out beef sent to Whole Foods has been recalled for fear of mad cow disease.

But if that's not enough to make you want to shun red meat, you might consider a plethora of evidence that eating cows can cause a variety of health woes from allergy that can occur hours after consumption to gastrointestinal and pancreatic cancer.

You might also be interested in what a health advocacy group awarded McDonald's this week for marketing cheeseburgers that are loaded with fat and sodium to your children.

Red meat breast cancer link

The link between red meat consumption and breast cancer comes from a nurses study. Women who were part of the Nurses’ Health Study II were found to have a slightly higher risk of developing the disease compared to those whose red meat intake, which was self-reported, was highest during early adulthood. The risk of breast cancer was 20 percent higher in association with eating red meat.

The finding came from Harvard researchers and was published in the British Medical Journal this week (BMJ).

Past studies suggest eating red meat could shorten lifespan, lead to heart disease and even increase a person's risk of type 2 diabetes.


Mad cow disease

Concerns about mad cow disease also prompted a Missouri company to recall more than 4,000 pounds of beef.

According to the FDA cows 30 months of age and above are required to have a portion of the spinal column removed known as the dorsal root ganglia before beef goes to market.

FSIS discovered employees at Fruitland American Meat, Jackson, Mo. may have incorrectly identified the age of the cattle. when the agency conducted a review of the company's logs.

The government agency has determined the health risk to consumers is "low" and none of the cattle showed signs of mad cow disease.

A mad cow related disease was responsible for the death of a Texas man and reported by the FDA earlier this month.

Avoiding red meat is recommended by the Physician's Committee for Responsible Medicine as a way to prevent cancer. The advocacy group also recently awarded McDonalds the committee’s SICK (Social Irresponsibility toward Consumers and Kids) Award for marketing their cheeseburger Happy Meals to kids.

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