Vitamin C-Enriched Bacon

Vitamin C-Enriched Bacon
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The addition of vitamin C to processed (cured) meats such as bacon may actually make them more carcinogenic.

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If plant-based antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin E can block the formation of nitrosamines, why don’t the bacon manufacturers of the world just add some vitamin C to their meat? They do. In fact, by law, in the United States, bacon has to have antioxidants like vitamin C added to it, to cut down on nitrosamine production. So, what’s the problem?

The vitamin C does not work in the presence of fat. In fact, it looks like it actually makes meat more carcinogenic, if you can believe it. In the presence of phytonutrients such as vitamin C, nitrosamine production drops as much as a thousandfold, or is completely blocked. In contrast, in the presence of fat, vitamin C has the opposite effect, increasing nitrosamine production 8–fold, 60-fold, 140-fold even. Instead of neutralizing the risk of nitrites, adding vitamin C to meat may make it worse. The presence of fat converts vitamin C from inhibiting to promoting acid nitrosamine production—for this kind of complicated reason, which you can read about.

So when meat industry commentators exclaim: “Pork is good for you. Animal fat is food for you. Cured meats assist the human body with cardiovascular health,” they don’t know what they’re talking about. The natural source of nitrites are from the nitrates in vegetables, which have the phytonutrients, without the fat that Jekyll-and-Hydes them. The bottom line? Our body wasn’t designed to get its vegetables in the form of bacon.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Dianne Moore.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Dev Librarian / Flickr

 

If plant-based antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin E can block the formation of nitrosamines, why don’t the bacon manufacturers of the world just add some vitamin C to their meat? They do. In fact, by law, in the United States, bacon has to have antioxidants like vitamin C added to it, to cut down on nitrosamine production. So, what’s the problem?

The vitamin C does not work in the presence of fat. In fact, it looks like it actually makes meat more carcinogenic, if you can believe it. In the presence of phytonutrients such as vitamin C, nitrosamine production drops as much as a thousandfold, or is completely blocked. In contrast, in the presence of fat, vitamin C has the opposite effect, increasing nitrosamine production 8–fold, 60-fold, 140-fold even. Instead of neutralizing the risk of nitrites, adding vitamin C to meat may make it worse. The presence of fat converts vitamin C from inhibiting to promoting acid nitrosamine production—for this kind of complicated reason, which you can read about.

So when meat industry commentators exclaim: “Pork is good for you. Animal fat is food for you. Cured meats assist the human body with cardiovascular health,” they don’t know what they’re talking about. The natural source of nitrites are from the nitrates in vegetables, which have the phytonutrients, without the fat that Jekyll-and-Hydes them. The bottom line? Our body wasn’t designed to get its vegetables in the form of bacon.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Dianne Moore.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Dev Librarian / Flickr

 

Doctor's Note

If you haven’t seen it, or need to brush up, the carcinogen-blocking effect of phytonutrients to which I refer was covered in Prevention Is Better Than Cured Meat. And for more on crazy things food industries say, check out Heart Attacks and Cholesterol: Agribusiness Sees It DifferentlyEgg Industry Blind SpotDietary Guidelines: Corporate GuidanceDietary Guidelines: Pushback From the Sugar, Salt and Meat Industries; and Is Pomegranate Juice That Wonderful? 

This is the second to last video in my three-week series that started with Doping With Beet Juice, and ends with So Should We Drink Beet Juice or Not? Thanks for sticking it out with me! 

For further context, also check out my associated blog post: Using Greens to Improve Athletic Performance.

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

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