The most popular fast food in the world with over 7 billion consumers in the US only, hot dogs, has become the subject of much debate recently. Namely, there’s mounting evidence that’s linked this food to 4 types of cancer.
It was the German immigrants that first introduced hot dogs in the 19th century. This food has been growing in popularity since then. Today, you can rightly say that hot dogs have an iconic status.
However, a new report issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) sheds new light on how we’ve perceived this food so far. The report states that all processed meats, including red meat, are cancer-causing.
Hot dogs are made of ‘edible’ slaughter by-products from pork, beef and chicken. These often include leftovers from steaks or pork chops, then parts of animal feet and heads, fatty tissue and skins.
In the production process, numerous additives, such as nitrates, large salt quantities, corn syrup and other chemicals, most of which have been linked to cancer, are used to enhance the taste of hot dogs.
According to institutions like the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the cancer risk from hot dogs is the same as the one from smoking.
The most dangerous substances regularly used in hot dogs are nitrates and nitrites, both of which bind with amines when exposed to high heat, and convert to nitrosamines.
Nitrosamines, on the other hand, have repeatedly been linked to 4 types of cancer:
- Bladder cancer
- Colon cancer
- Stomach cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
The American Institute for Cancer Research warns that the risk for colorectal cancer rises by 21% for people who consume only one hot dog a day. Unfortunately, even organic hot dogs contain nitrite, often in higher amounts than traditional hot dogs.