15 Cancer Causing Foods You Probably Don’t Know

We probably do not think the food we are eating every day might be cancer causing. However there is a clear connection between food and cancer prevention. As cancer became the plague of our modern age, a lot of research has been done on its prevention. With many reports on food and cancer prevention available nowadays, we want to inform you about the most cancer causing foods. One part of the prevention plan is avoiding such foods, some other tips on the prevention we will discuss at the end of the article. So keep reading and stay healthy!

15. Canned Tomatoes

canned-tomatoes

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Though fresh organic tomatoes help the body resist infections and actually fight cancer, canned tomatoes are carcinogenic (cancer causing) food. Mostly because the lining of food cans contains Bisphenol A (BPA) which is considered a harmful substance by Canadian Cancer Society.

Tomatoes are especially bad in cans because they are acidic which promotes leaching of chemical BPA out of the lining into canned tomatoes. Another reason this unassuming food isn’t as healthy as we think is that tomatoes are heavily sprayed with pesticides. Since the skin of tomatoes is thin and absorbent, it is now included in Dirty Dozen food list. So it is better to consume tomatoes fresh and organically grown.

14. Sodas

Sodas have no nutritional value, contain high amounts of phosphates, and tremendous amounts of white sugar and chemicals. They can easily deplete the body of nutrients and can cause weight gain and promote obesity. Sodas often contain artificial flavoring, artificial coloring and artificial sweeteners, all of which are cancer causing substances [2]. Among artificial sweeteners, saccharin is the greatest concern.

Research studies have linked it with cancer in laboratory animals as a cancer initiator and promoter. Another sweetener,  aspartame is widely used in soft drinks. Furthermore,  research studies found it caused brain tumors in lab animals.

Sodas also happen to be quite acidic, and when packaged in aluminum cans, can leak quite high amounts of aluminum. Aluminum itself has been connected with weakened gastrointestinal tract and with Alzheimer’s disease, there are increased aluminum levels in the brain tissue.

13. Farmed Fish

We tend to think that eating fish is very healthy, especially cold water ones like salmon because of high omega-3 content. The omega-3 essential fatty acids found in saltwater fish come from a diet of deep-water plankton and smaller fish. Farm-raised species of fish do not have such high omega-3 content. That is because farmed fish are usually fed an unnatural diet.

Also,  they are contaminated with antibiotics, pesticides, chemicals and other cancer causing substances. These farmed fish have been shown to have higher levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a group of industrial chemicals. Synthetic pigments (canthaxanthans) are often added to the fish so that it gets its pink color, while in the wild it happens naturally [3].

Wild-caught fish is still definitely the best choice. Though nowadays even wild-caught fish can be contaminated with chemicals like mercury. To read more about what kind of fish is safe and what fish is the most contaminated, click here.

12. Processed Meat

Processed meats include bacon, sausages, hot dogs, deli meats, beef jerk, ham. These meats have been modified to change their taste or to extend shelf life, to do this  the main methods of processing are smoking, curing, adding salt and preservatives.

Recently the World Health Organization (WHO)’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) announced that consumption of processed meat is “carcinogenic to humans”. Twenty-two experts from 10 countries reviewed more than 800 studies to reach their conclusions. They found that eating 50 grams of processed meat every day increased the risk of colon cancer by 18%. That’s the equivalent of about 4 strips of bacon or 1 hot dog. Cancer causing chemicals form during meat processing. These include N-nitroso compounds and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).