Grilled or Smoked Meats, Even Fish, Can Be Risky for Breast Cancer Survivors

Grilled or Smoked Meats, Even Fish, Can Be Risky for Breast Cancer Survivors
Eating grilled, barbecued, and smoked meats — including poultry and fish — may raise a breast cancer survivor's risk of dying, new research suggests. The study, “Grilled, Barbecued, and Smoked Meat Intake and Survival Following Breast Cancer,” was published in JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Meats cooked at high temperatures, as are grilled, barbecued and smoked meats, have long been associated with carcinogenic chemicals like polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. According to a press release, consuming foods with these carcinogens is also linked to breast cancer incidence. Here, researchers led by Humberto Parada Jr. at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill looked at whether a diet rich in such meats also affected survival after breast cancer — and found that regular and even light consumption of some meats prepared this way, especially smoked meats, had an impact. The researchers interviewed 1,508 women with breast cancer living on Long Island. The women were asked about their consumption of grilled, barbecued, or smoked beef, lamb, pork and poultry/fish during each decade of their lives, and the seasons they most frequently consumed these foods. At a five-year follow-up, the women were again asked these questions for that specific period. After a median follow-up of 17.6 years, the researchers reported 597 deaths in the study population, 237 (39.7 percent) of which were related to breast cancer. High intake of
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