Can Sandwich Meat Kill You?

Dovetailing on our recent blog about hot dogs, we’re taking a closer look at cold cuts, which are considered processed meat like hot dogs and bacon.  Consumer Reports did a deep dive into cold cuts and we think some of it will surprise you.  Nitrates or nitrites are used in cold cuts, which are known carcinogens.  They preserve and flavor the meat and are known to increase the risk of cancer.  You might think grabbing the sandwich meat labeled “no nitrates” might be a better choice, but the preservatives used to substitute the nitrates, such as celery, convert to the same compounds that cause cancer.  Their chemical composition is exactly the same and so are the health effects.  Cold cuts have other health concerns, such as coloring agents, high sodium levels, and potential listeria contamination that has been known to cause death.  This Consumer Reports article evaluates each of these and how they affect your health, with easy-to-read comparative graphs.  Are they telling you to stop eating cold cuts?  No.  They are letting you know the risks and that there is no safe level of consumption of these meats.  Make wise choices to have the best health possible Southern Oregon!

Danger at the Deli – Consumer Reports