Wednesday, October 28, 2015

5 Things to Know About the WHO’s Statement on Red Meat and Cancer

"It was the statement heard ‘round the world—people paused mid-bite, holding up that bacon cheeseburger in disbelief, as the World Health Organization announced yesterday that it would classify both processed and red meat as carcinogens. Here are five things to know about the announcement:
The Term “Carcinogens” Can Be Misleading
That’s because all WHO findings fall into a category system that can be pretty confusing. WHO’s classifications “are based on strength of evidence not degree of risk,” Ed Yong writes for The Atlantic. That means that things like processed meat that fall into Group 1 (established carcinogens) are similar not because of how risky they are, but because of the strength of evidence that they cause cancer. Hence, plutonium and processed meat fall into the same category—though plutonium is much more likely to give you cancer. The categories get even more confusing as you head into groups 2A and 2B, writes Yong. Given the criteria used by the WHO, it's silly to compare eating meat with something as carcinogenic as smoking or handling radioactive materials, so proceed with caution..."
Red meat

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