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One slice of bacon every day raises risk of dementia

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One slice of bacon every day raises risk of dementia

Eating just one rasher of bacon every day is enough to increase your risk of dementia by 44 percent—and that’s true for any processed meat.

The damaging effects of processed meats have been revealed by researchers from Leeds University who analysed the eating habits and health of nearly 500,000 people who participated in the UK Biobank survey.

Eating just 25g of processed meat—the equivalent of a single rasher of bacon—every day increases the risk of dementia by 44 percent. But conversely those who ate unprocessed red meat—such as beef, pork or veal—reduced their risk by 19 percent.

Nearly 3000 people in the survey developed dementia during the eight years they were tracked, and they tended to be older, less educated, poorer, more likely to smoke and were less physically active.

Although genetic factors increased the chances of dementia six-fold, the risks from eating processed meats were constant across all genetic types. Those who ate the most processed meat tended to be male, were overweight or obese, and ate small amounts of vegetables and fruit.

(Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2021; doi: 10.1093/ajcn/nqab028)

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Article Topics: meat, nutrition
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