Beef and Health

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Telos

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At the fitness center where I am the the Chef, a number of our customers who have been diagnosed with a varity of cancers have been told by their health care professionals to stop eating beef. Does anyone know of any objective studies showing eating beef is associated with pancreatic, liver or prostate cancer?


 

Show Heifer

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Funny you should ask...I just heard a few days ago on GMA that a study from a medical board in England found a direct correlation between cancer and eating beef.  But I didn't catch any names or offical titles (didn't much pay attention to it...I was eating biscuits and gravy at the time!! ;D)  Sorry  ???
If I find it, I will let you know!
 

renegade

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Pratically everything "causes" cancer these days.  The other day i heard on the news wine causes cancer risk to greatly increase.  A couple of decades ago they said that the pesticides on apples caused cancer but they forgot to mention how many apples you would have to eat a day to get cancer from it. I forget the exact number but it was an outragous number of bushels of apples every day for a year.
 

DL

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Telos - the WCRF report was released on Wed last week - it is over 500 pages and basically summarizes all studies that have to do with nutrition and health - esp cancer since the last report they did in the 90s. I have read parts of it and can send you a copies of the red meat section. Basically they combined information from epidemiological studies and with these kinds of studies you generally end up with "associations" not causation. Although there were many "experts" involved in this review there may be a bias. There appears to be confusion (by the lay press) as to the difference between processed meats (with nitrates etc which actually may be an issue) and other meat. IMVHO the comments being made about beef are not supported by the data. Of course any summary report involves interpretation, and then their is the medias ability to interpret  :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:

The primary message from this paper is that weight loss/optimum weight, exercise, and a balanced diet will go a long way toward decreasing risk or many things - moderation and NO smoking  ;)
 

OH Breeder

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Telos,
I subscribe to New England Journal Of Medicine, one of the oldest and more notable medical journals. I found nothing on eating beef and cancer. Lots of articles on Coronary Artery disease and trans fat. I usually like to see articles footnoted and studies referanced. The articles below are not footnoted which makes me doubt the  creditability of the information but none the less they are on the American cancer society's websight.

Article date: 2005/01/11 

"Our study was better able to separate the risk associated with meat consumption from that associated with other factors that affect colorectal cancer risk, especially obesity and physical inactivity," said co-author Michael Thun, MD, MS, chief of epidemiology and surveillance research at ACS.

The verdict: Eating large amounts of red or processed meat over a long period of time can indeed raise colorectal cancer risk. But the risks from such a diet are smaller than those from obesity and lack of exercise, both for colon cancer and for overall health.

"While these risks to overall health are not in the same league as the risk from smoking, obesity, and physical inactivity," said Thun, "these findings are important because red and processed meat are major components of the diet of many Americans, and because there is now substantial evidence that long-term high consumption increases the risk of colon cancer."

The findings, published in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association (Vol. 293, No. 2: 172-182), are based on a long-term study of nearly 149,000 adults between the ages of 50 and 74. The participants filled out a questionnaire about their eating habits in 1982, and again in 1992/1993. Thun and his colleagues looked at how many people had developed colon cancer by 2001, then analyzed the risk according to how much red meat, poultry, or fish the people had eaten.

A Few Ounces a Day Raised Risk
The people who ate the most red meat in both time periods were 30%-40% more likely to develop cancer in the lower part of the colon, compared to people who ate the least. People who ate the most processed meats were 50% more likely to develop colon cancer and 20% more likely to develop rectal cancer compared to those who ate the least.

So how much meat are we talking about?

For red meat (beef, lamb, pork), the researchers defined "high" consumption as 3 or more ounces per day for men -- or about the amount of meat in a large fast-food hamburger. For women the "high" amount was 2 or more ounces per day. For processed meat (bacon, sausage, hot dogs, ham, cold cuts) "high" consumption was 1 ounce eaten 5 or 6 days per week for men, and 2 or 3 days per week for women. A slice of bologna weighs about 1 ounce; 2 slices of cooked bacon weigh a little more than half an ounce.




Go to American Cancer Society and one of there healthy diets is Asian Beef salad. see below.

http://www.cancer.org/docroot/subsite/greatamericans/content/Asian_Beef_Salad.asp

One of the healthy lifestyle recommendations is
"Processed and red meats: Cutting back on processed meats like hot dogs, bologna, and luncheon meat, and red meats like beef, pork and lamb may help reduce the risk of colon and prostate cancers. These foods are also high in saturated fat, so eating less of them and eating them less often will also help you lower your risk of heart disease."

http://www.cancer.org/docroot/NWS/content/NWS_1_1x_Eating_Lots_of_Red_Meat_Linked_to_Colon_Cancer.asp

Eating Lots of Red Meat Linked to Colon Cancer
Risk Less Than That Posed by Obesity

Article date: 2005/01/11 
 

People who eat a lot of red meat or processed meats may be raising their risk for colon cancer. Although this link has been shown before, a new study by American Cancer Society researchers helps explain the relationship.

"Our study was better able to separate the risk associated with meat consumption from that associated with other factors that affect colorectal cancer risk, especially obesity and physical inactivity," said co-author Michael Thun, MD, MS, chief of epidemiology and surveillance research at ACS.

The verdict: Eating large amounts of red or processed meat over a long period of time can indeed raise colorectal cancer risk. But the risks from such a diet are smaller than those from obesity and lack of exercise, both for colon cancer and for overall health.

"While these risks to overall health are not in the same league as the risk from smoking, obesity, and physical inactivity," said Thun, "these findings are important because red and processed meat are major components of the diet of many Americans, and because there is now substantial evidence that long-term high consumption increases the risk of colon cancer."

The findings, published in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association (Vol. 293, No. 2: 172-182), are based on a long-term study of nearly 149,000 adults between the ages of 50 and 74. The participants filled out a questionnaire about their eating habits in 1982, and again in 1992/1993. Thun and his colleagues looked at how many people had developed colon cancer by 2001, then analyzed the risk according to how much red meat, poultry, or fish the people had eaten.

A Few Ounces a Day Raised Risk
The people who ate the most red meat in both time periods were 30%-40% more likely to develop cancer in the lower part of the colon, compared to people who ate the least. People who ate the most processed meats were 50% more likely to develop colon cancer and 20% more likely to develop rectal cancer compared to those who ate the least.

So how much meat are we talking about?

For red meat (beef, lamb, pork), the researchers defined "high" consumption as 3 or more ounces per day for men -- or about the amount of meat in a large fast-food hamburger. For women the "high" amount was 2 or more ounces per day. For processed meat (bacon, sausage, hot dogs, ham, cold cuts) "high" consumption was 1 ounce eaten 5 or 6 days per week for men, and 2 or 3 days per week for women. A slice of bologna weighs about 1 ounce; 2 slices of cooked bacon weigh a little more than half an ounce.



One

 

Telos

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Thanks all, for the feedback and taking the time to research and respond.

It is about all the specifics that have not been thoroughly studied, which concerns me. Could it be , it is the way we process and prepare red meat that increases these risks and not the product itself?



 

Show Heifer

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I live close to a community that is all about "organic, vegetarian, peace, love and happiness". And let me tell ya, they are the most sickly looking people around. In fact, their men eat so much soy products that they are a bit, well, feminine. And their women struggle with bone density, fertility (as do their men).
Sad part is, when they get ill with a serious illness, many turn to "homeopathic" treatments until modern medicine in unable to save them.
Many of you know I ask about losing weight a few months back, and I am still trying. Although I must admit, I struggle. I have to laugh though, my blood pressure is low normal, my iron is high for a female, my pulse is low normal, and my glucose is stable. The only thing my ol' dr says is my cardio lung capacity could be better (I get out of breathe too early for his liking). But he even admits I am pretty healthy!  So I  say to him "Please pass the steak, potato and butter!"  (clapping)  By the way, I love the new AqualCal water!!!! Grape is the best!!!!
 

justintime

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My grandfather( and most of his generation) ate beef and pototoes drenched in beef gravy at least once a day for most of his life. One of his favourite snacks was thick sliced bread fried in lard ( I am almost gagging as I type this). His Doctor told him that  this practice could affect his life... and it did. He died at age 101, was living in his own home and had a memory as sharp as a tack. He drove his car untiil age 99 and started to date at age 97 after his wife of 75 years passed away ( you can justy imagine the excitment that caused in the family... especially with the female members!!!) . Me... I was pretty impressed with him.

I am thinking that there are many other things in our society that are affecting us all much more than beef is. I can not remember a kid in my school with peanut allergies and I cannot ever remember anyone that had this serious allergy, when I was growing up. Now it is epidemic. My wife can hardly go to any functions anymore as many perfumes( as well as several food additives) make her very sick. Last night we went to a family wedding reception at a large hotel. We got into the elevator and instantly smelled the perfume of a previous passenger. By the time we got to the reception two floors away, she could hardly talk and was up most of the night with a " migraine from Hell". Everywhere you look there are people with allergies to numerous foods and cosmetics, and this has mostly happened in the last generation or two. Me thinks it is time for some mega research on some of these phenomenon rather than wondering if too much beef will cause cancer. Beef, like almost all other things in our lives, is probably best when consumed in moderation. As I get older, I am starting to realize that moderation or "optimal" are words we need to be aware of, in regards to what we consume, how much rest we get, how big our cattle are, how much fertilizer and chemicals we use, etc etc etc. 
 

Rocky Hill Simmental

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Missouri
Beef causing cancer won't stop me from eating. According to researchers everything else causes cancer anyway so they'd have to get along to blaming beef eventually. lol

Someone once told be that a long time ago big cities were really dirty and vegetarians (and other people too- it was just more common for vegetarians) used to die because they'd get diarrhea and there weren't mediences or antibiotics to cure extreme cases back then. I'm guessing it was similar to deadly scours in young calves.

Vegetarians aren't as sickly as vegans though. I have a cousin who's a vegeatarian but she's not one of the strange ones that think that raising livestock or hunting is wrong (her dad's actually real big in hunting and she's been to some cattle shows to see my heifers) and she eats cheese and drinks milk and stuff. She said she doesn't eat meat because she doesn't like the taste of it (she won't kick a horse when she's riding though so we have to lead the horse around for her). However, the "meat is wrong" vegetarians/vegans are strange and scare me somewhat. lol
 

knabe

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fear causes cancer.
fear stifles creativity.
fear causes personality cults
fear stifles debate
fear labels debate as dissention
fear is leads to weakness
fear leads to appeasement
fear is evil
fear is just plain stupid

more money is wasted on not irradiating hamburger (about 1.5 cents a pound), ie recalls and the known cause of death, than irradiation.  stupid.
fear doesn't require proof.
fear only requires a kernel of proof
fear leads to thinking matt laeur is unbiased.



 

knabe

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here's a couple of studies

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/73040.php
http://www.westonaprice.org/mythstruths/mtbeef.html

a lot of negative finding studies are based on questionaires, rather than actual findings in the lab.
toxicity studies usually are centered around limiting other foods in the diet.
man is an omnivore.

the public became concerned a few years ago about the styrofoam peanuts used in packaging causing cancer.  lo and behold, the mice had to eat exhorbidant amounts, way beyond what they could possibly eat if offered a regular diet with free access to the styrofoam.

i'll keep looking. 
 

Joe Boy

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Jan 31, 2007
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Telos,
Great post.  I loved everyone's remarks.....

I read a summary of the article on Saturday morning in the newspaper.  Found it interesting.

My uncle was told to eat more beans to help his digestive track.  He loved peanuts and ate a cup of beans per day.  He has had a colon surgery a couple of times since following those instructions and now cannot eat any nuts or beans...... go figure....
 

Joe Boy

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Since the English did t his study, I have some doubts about it....  they have less cattle due to MCD and other t hings and might be wanting to slow the market... who paid for the study?  What were they seeking to learn?  How did it run in comparison to vegetables that are raised?  Does one vegetable seem to be more cancer causing than others?  What were the statistics as compared to non-beef eaters of the same family?

On my first date with a girl that I wanted to impress, we ate Fillet Minion.  Can you imagine saying to your girlfriend or wife, "Honey, I am taking you to 'so-in-so' restaurant for grilled spinach?  My cousin meant well, but when my wife came home from the hospital brought us a spinach casserole.  We ate it, but not with enthusiasm of one that had a little ground sirloin in it...
 

knabe

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the nuts comments are interesting.  coarse ground pepper is a problem too.  part of the problem with the digestive tract is that humans need solid stools to clean out the lower intestinal tract.  these little hard to digest chunks get caught in the structure and don't get moved out and can cause problems.  supposedly most people have low grade colon cancer in advanced age 60 and beyond?  i can't remember, i think it was dl, who said there was a johnes equivalent in humans, and that it was bacterial in nature as well.  what in our diets encourages bacteria?  i'm thinking sugar is the culprit, as when we want bacteria to flourish, we give it sugar.  the biggest diet change in the last 50 years has been high fructose corn syrup.  it was a boon to reduce fuel costs to transport sugar, but is probably the source of more problems than red meat ever thought about being.  bacteria probably love the little granuals stuck in the intestinal tract as they don't get flushed out and all kinds of muckity muck can get stuck in there with them as a food source.  but i guess it's just not emotional enough of a sale compared to red meat being evil cause it ties in nicely with global warming, water resources, land ownership, all of knabe's hit list.

telos, perhaps you could put up a flier to have people bring in labels of their favorite food WITHOUT high fructose corn syrup.  just think, if we put all that corn syrup in our cars, we could be energy independent. 

remember, the price of oil and the declining dollar really is about the offset of doing business and transferring manufacturing to countries that have no property rights.  course it's difficult to explain that to kids who are only intersted in their ipods.  our foolish policies overpriced property ownership beyond any capacity to make a profit.  hence, we offshore to where land is cheap, or the government owns it, so it's essentially free.  when people begin to think that an appreciating home value is a right, that was when we got in trouble.  when we used it to finance spending habits, we got further in trouble, and now we want taxpayers to bail these people out.  let corrections happen, stopping it only makes things more expensive.
 

knabe

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telos, did you see the article today regarding that being fat may not be that bad afterall?  of course the skinny crowd was all over it.  fat (not obese) people have less incedence of a list of things than skinny people.  may have something to do with storing crap in your fat versus your liver.  people who lose weight have to put all that stuff that's in the fat somewhere when they lose weight.  body probably can't process it all without some issues.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/health/dietfitness.html?in_article_id=398553&in_page_id=1798&in_a_source
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/286264/being_fat_may_save_your_life.html
http://www.mercurynews.com/news/ci_7392479?nclick_check=1
 

Show Heifer

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The study of my dreams!!!! ;D
Although, I have heard that yes, the skinny folks and those darn doctors are all over it....but I do find it odd that everyone around my area that dies a "premature" death is usually thin. Hmmmmmmm
I guess it goes to show, extremes of anything is not good!
 

chambero

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Here goes that common sense thing again.

Humans have canine teeth for a reason - we are meant to eat meat.

The recommendations regarding eating meat and beef in particular are probably more to do with disrupted digestive systems from the chemo and other drugs given to cancer patients.  The obviously aren't worried about beef causing cancer since the people already have it. 

The chemo drugs are so hard on the body I bet it severely inhibits lots of bodily functions.

Cancer rates have largely increased because people live long enough now to get it.  It hasn't been that long that people usually died of something else before cancers had time to develop.  Of course all of the synthetic chemicals in our lives really are a big cause.  But we developed those things for a reason and the alternatives are worse.  You have to die of something.
 
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