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New Study: These 10 Ultra-Processed Foods Are Leading To Cancers And Early Death

New Study: These 10 Ultra-Processed Foods Are Leading To Cancers And Early Death

ultra-processed

Photo: Mini Oreos, July 19, 2005 (AP/Mark Lennihan) / Hot dogs, New York, July 1, 2022 / French fries, Jan. 29, 2019 (AP//David J. Phillip)

If you like Oreo cookies, hot dogs, French fries, this could be a problem for your health. Such ultra-processed foods are linked to cancer and early death, found two recent studies.

Ultra-processed foods are significantly altered foods that contain ingredients not used in home cooking, including colorings, sweeteners, preservatives, emulsifiers, and bulking agents. In general, ultra-processed foods are also higher in salt, fat, and sugar.

Ultra Processed foods include pre-packaged soups, sauces, frozen pizza, ready-to-eat meals, and pleasure foods such as hot dogs, sausages, french fries, sodas, store-bought cookies, cakes, candies, doughnuts, ice cream, and many more.

There are significant differences between highly processed foods and minimally processed or unprocessed foods. Highly processed, or ultra-processed, foods contain few or no minimally processed or unprocessed ingredients, according to Healthline.

Minimally processed and unprocessed foods include vegetables, fruits, grains, beans, and nuts. Processed foods, meanwhile, include items made by adding ingredients like salt, sugar, or other substances. Fresh bread, fruits in syrup, and cheese are some examples.

“Literally hundreds of studies link ultra-processed foods to obesity, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and overall mortality,” Marion Nestle, the Paulette Goddard professor emerita of nutrition, food studies, and public health at New York University,told CNN. Nestle is also the author of numerous books on food politics and marketing, including 2015’s book “Soda Politics: Taking on Big Soda (and Winning).”


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Eating a lot of ultra-processed foods significantly increases men’s risk of colorectal cancer and heart disease and early death in both men and women, according to two recently published studies. The studies looked at populations in the U.S. and Italy published in British medical journal The BMJ.

Eating a lot of ultra-processed foods significantly increases men’s risk of colorectal cancer and can lead to heart disease and early death in both men and women, according to two recently published studies. The studies, published in British medical journal The BMJ, looked at populations in U.S and Italy.

“These two studies continue the consistency: Ultra Processed foods are unambiguously associated with an increased risk for chronic disease,” said Nestle, who was not involved in either study.

The U.S.-based study analyzed the diets of over 200,000 men and women for up to 28 years and found a link between ultra-processed foods and colorectal cancer in men, but not women. The study found that women tended to eat fewer ultra-processed foods.

“These two studies continue the consistency: Ultra Processed foods are unambiguously associated with an increased risk for chronic disease,” said Nestle, who was not involved in either study.

Here are 10 ultra-processed foods to avoid, though there are others:

1. Ham

2. Bacon

3. Salami

4. Hotdogs

5. Beef jerkey

6. Corned beef

7. Carbonated drinks

8. Fermented alcoholic drinks such as beer, wine and cider. Even whisky, gin, and rum.

9. Instant soup, including ramen

10. Mass-produced bread and biscuits

“We found that men in the highest quintile of ultra-processed food consumption, compared to those in the lowest quintile, had a 29 percent higher risk of developing colorectal cancer,” said co-senior author Fang Fang Zhang of the U.S. study. Zhang is a cancer epidemiologist and chair of the division of nutrition epidemiology and data science at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in Boston.

“Americans consume a large percentage of their daily calories from ultra-processed foods — 58 percent in adults and 67 percent in children,” she added to CNN. “We should consider substituting the ultra-processed foods with unprocessed or minimally processed foods in our diet for cancer prevention and prevention of obesity and cardiovascular diseases.”

The second study done in Italy, which began in March 2005,, included more than 22,000 people. The researchers followed them for a dozen years in the Molise region of Italy. And the findings were similar, those in the study who ate ultra-processed foods were at great risks for cancer.

The recommendation, according to researchers, is that people should include more fresh fruits and vegetables in their diets.

Photo: Mini Oreos in a New York convenience store, July 19, 2005 (AP/Mark Lennihan) / Hot dogs at the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest, New York, July 1, 2022 / French fries for sale at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the NFL Super Bowl 53, Atlanta, Jan. 29, 2019 (AP//David J. Phillip)