Processed Meat: How Much Is too Much?

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Today we're talking about cross to meet. What exactly do we consider to be processed meats? What are the concerns with them? How much is too much you know virtually all of the healthy eating guidelines everything from the dietary guidelines for Americans to the recommendations put out by the World Health Organization the American Cancer Society, and the American heart. Association. They all include some sort of recommendation to limit your intake of cross meet. But there's a lot of confusion about what counts as processed meat. I mean Ham Bacon Pepperoni and hotdogs those are generally included in that category. But what about uncured bacon or hot dogs that have no nitrites added what about the sliced Turkey or roast beef from the Deli counter are they processed and what exactly is it about processed meat that makes it a potential problem? Is it just about the nitrites is sodium saturated fat all of the above. I think there's also some understandable confusion about what exactly it means to limit your consumption is one serving a week too much one serving a month is any amount safe? Kathleen Zalman is a registered. Dietitian who other things served for many years as the director of nutrition for the Website Web md she recently wrote a white paper for the North American. Meat Institute addressing some of these questions and concerns about processed meats, and then she sat down with me later to discuss this further. So I, what exactly is the definition of a processed meat? As Kathleen explains in her white paper minimally processed meat is the correct term for raw uncooked meat products that have been minimally altered such as grinding or cutting to create familiar cuts like strip steaks or pork chops. No additives or preservatives are used. It's simply processed from the whole animal into edible portions. You see in the grocery store and then she goes on to say further processed is the term used for meat and poultry that has been transformed through salting curing fermentation, smoking cooking battering breading, or the addition of ingredients to enhance flavor or improve preservation and safety examples include hotdogs, Ham sausages, corned beef lunch, meat, Bacon or beef Jerky as well as canned meat and meat based preparations. So you see the problem here, most of us would not call a piece of raw chicken or pork processed meat but in the meat industry, these are considered processed meats for that matter I think most of us would not put a can of tuna into the same category as hot dogs or corned beef, and yet in the meat industry these are all further processed meats. The way processed meat is defined in research studies is also fuzzy and very inconsistent, but it does a line more with the meat industry's definition of further processed. But nomenclature, aside, it's important to note that processing serves some useful functions such as inhibiting the growth of dangerous pathogens, increasing food safety and extending shelf life.

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