News / Health

    Red Meat Linked to Breast Cancer in Harvard Study

    FILE- A beef chuck roast is displayed in Philadelphia, April 13, 2007.
    FILE- A beef chuck roast is displayed in Philadelphia, April 13, 2007.

    Related Articles

    Anti-Malaria Plan Could Wipe Out Mosquitoes Without Insecticides

    Scientists have developed insects that produce almost exclusively male offspring, females are the ones that bite

    Activist Group Calls on S. Africa to Declare TB a Public Health Emergency

    Treatment Action Campaign wants national mobilization against the disease

    Texting Could Help Smokers Quit

    Study shows smokers who use text-messaging program to help them quit are twice as successful at quitting compared to a control group
    VOA News
    Eating red meat as an early adult could increase the risk of breast cancer, according to new research.

    Researchers from Harvard University analyzed data on over 88,000 premenopausal women aged 26 to 45 who are taking part in the Nurse’s Health Study II and completed a questionnaire on their eating habits in 1991.

    The Nurse’s Health study has been monitoring the health of female registered nurses since 1976.

    Red meat included unprocessed beef, pork, lamb and hamburger, and processed red meat included hot dogs, bacon and sausage.

    For the questionnaire, the nurses were asked to rate the frequency they ate red meat from among nine categories ranging from “never or less than once per month” to “six or more per day.”
     
    Taking into account factors like age, height, weight, family history and race, the researchers were able to identify 2,830 cases of breast cancer cases over 20 years.
     
    Using statistical modeling, the researchers say they were able to estimate breast cancer risks for women with different diets. They said that for each increase from among the nine options for red meat consumption, there was an increase in developing breast cancer.
     
    Researchers said a higher intake of red meat was associated with a 22 percent increase in risk of breast cancer. Each additional serving per day upped the risk by 13 percent.
     
    Substituting chicken for one serving of red meat per day actually reduced the risk of breast cancer by 17 percent, the study said.
     
    In concluding, the study’s authors said that eating a lot of red meat in early adulthood "may be a risk factor for breast cancer, and replacing red meat with a combination of legumes, poultry, nuts and fish may reduce the risk of breast cancer."
     
    They cautioned, however that further study of the relation between diet in early adulthood and cancer is needed.
     
    A diet high in red meat has long been linked to colon cancer and pancreatic cancer, but its relationship to breast cancer has been little understood.
     
    Not all were convinced by the study.
     
    “As several researchers who have analyzed this study have already pointed out, the totality of the available evidence indicates that red meat consumption has little or no effect on breast cancer risk,” said the American Meat Institute’s vice president for scientific affairs, Betsy Booren, PhD in an emailed statement.
     
    “This study with extremely weak associations based on self-reported food intake doesn’t add much to our current knowledge on this complex condition. It is well known that the best steps women can take to reduce their breast cancer risk are maintaining a healthy weight, exercising, reducing alcohol consumption and not smoking.”
     
    Another expert said the study was not definitive.
     
    "The women who ate less red meat may have a healthier lifestyle, and that reduces their risk of cancer, Dr. Stephanie Bernik, chief of surgical oncology at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City told the website Healthday. “The increased risk tied to red meat might only stand in for other unhealthy behaviors," she said. "A healthy lifestyle can lower your risk of cancer in general."
     
    Mia Gaudet, director of genetic epidemiology at the American Cancer Society, told the Associated Press that eating red meat as an early adult could be connected to increased risk of developing breast cancer.
     
    "Breasts are still developing and are more susceptible to carcinogens before women have their first full-term pregnancy," she said.
     
    The American Cancer Society recommends people eat a "plant-based" diet.

    "It's important to have a healthy lifestyle throughout your life and not just as you get older and more worried about cancer," Gaudet told the AP. "People should perhaps consider ordering a salad or a vegetarian option sometime."

    You May Like

    Chechen Suspected in Istanbul Attack, but Questions Remain

    Turkish sources say North Caucasus militants involved in bombing at Ataturk airport, but name of at least one alleged attacker raises doubts

    With Johnson Out, Can a New ‘Margaret Thatcher’ Save Britain?

    Contest to replace David Cameron as Britain’s prime minister started in earnest Thursday with top candidates outlining strategy to deal with Brexit fallout

    US Finds Progress Slow Against Human Trafficking in Africa

    Africa continues to be a major source and destination for human trafficking of all kinds -- from forced labor to sexual slavery, says State Department report

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Rod Trent
    June 12, 2014 12:51 PM
    The study is flawed. It doesn't take into account that man-induced hormones in red meat could be the actual cause.

    by: Galahad from: Blandings
    June 11, 2014 6:58 PM
    That picture of the joint of beef is weird - where's the fat?

    See the work of Weston A Price, who found that communities eating nutrient dense food were the healthiest, and by nutrient dense food he meant organ meat, animal fat, fish, eggs, and fermented food

    http://www.westonaprice.org/

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Clinton Leads Trump, But Many Voters Don't Like Eitheri
    X
    Jim Malone
    June 29, 2016 6:16 PM
    In the U.S. presidential race, most recent polls show Democrat Hillary Clinton with a steady lead over Republican Donald Trump as both presumptive party nominees prepare for their party conventions next month. Trump’s disapproval ratings have risen in some recent surveys, but Clinton also suffers from high negative ratings, suggesting both candidates have a lot of work to do to improve their images before the November election. VOA National correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Clinton Leads Trump, But Many Voters Don't Like Either

    In the U.S. presidential race, most recent polls show Democrat Hillary Clinton with a steady lead over Republican Donald Trump as both presumptive party nominees prepare for their party conventions next month. Trump’s disapproval ratings have risen in some recent surveys, but Clinton also suffers from high negative ratings, suggesting both candidates have a lot of work to do to improve their images before the November election. VOA National correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Slow Rebuilding Amid Boko Haram Destruction in Nigeria’s Northeast

    Military operations have chased Boko Haram out of towns and cities in Nigeria’s northeast since early last year. But it is only recently that people have begun returning to their homes in Adamawa state, near the border with Cameroon, to try to rebuild their lives. For VOA, Chris Stein traveled to the area and has this report.
    Video

    Video New US Ambassador to Somalia Faces Heavy Challenges

    The new U.S. envoy to Somalia, who was sworn into office Monday, will be the first American ambassador to that nation in 25 years. He will take up his post as Somalia faces a number of crucial issues, including insecurity, an upcoming election, and the potential closure of the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. VOA’s Jill Craig asked Somalis living in Kenya’s capital city Nairobi how they feel about the U.S. finally installing a new ambassador.
    Video

    Video At National Zoo, Captivating Animal Sculptures Illustrate Tragedy of Ocean Pollution

    The National Zoo in Washington, D.C., is home to about 1,800 animals, representing 300 species. But throughout the summer, visitors can also see other kinds of creatures there. They are larger-than-life animal sculptures that speak volumes about a global issue — the massive plastic pollution in our oceans. VOA's June Soh takes us to the zoo's special exhibit, called Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea.
    Video

    Video Baghdad Bikers Defy War with a Roar

    Baghdad is a city of contradictions. War is a constant. Explosions and kidnappings are part of daily life. But the Iraqi capital remains a thriving city, even if a little beat up. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on how some in Baghdad are defying the stereotype of a nation at war by pursuing a lifestyle known for its iconic symbols of rebellion: motorbikes, leather jackets and roaring engines.
    Video

    Video Melting Pot of Immigrants Working to Restore US Capitol Dome

    The American Iron Works company is one of the firms working to renovate the iconic U.S. Capitol Dome. The company employs immigrants of many different cultural and national backgrounds. VOA’s Arman Tarjimanyan has more.
    Video

    Video Testing Bamboo as Building Material

    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Orphanage in Iraqi City Houses Kids Who Lost their Parents to Attacks by IS

    An orphanage in Iraqi Kurdistan has become home to scores of Yazidi children who lost their parents after Islamic State militants took over Sinjar in Iraq’s Nineveh Province in 2014. Iraqi Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. airstrikes have since recaptured Sinjar but the need for the care provided by the orphanage continues. VOA’s Kawa Omar filed this report narrated by Rob Raffaele.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora