Some sad news about bacon, and other processed meats

I love bacon, and I have been telling people for years they should probably eat more of it. Preferably from pastured pigs. Lard can be high in Vitamin D but only if the pigs are raised outside in the sunlight which doesn’t happen in commercial hog production. The other thing that happens in commercial production of pork products is the addition of nitrates and nitrites. You have probably heard of these guys and perhaps attempted to avoid them. Some people react to them with headaches, and they have been linked to increased cancer rates. Children, one of the largest consumers of nitrate and nitrite laden hot dogs are especially susceptible to the cancer inducing ingredient. It is not the nitrates and nitrites themselves it is compounds formed when they react with compounds in meat which cause the problem. This has been know for decades but the meat processing industry has done a great job of convincing us that it isn’t a problem. Why? Because using nitrate and nitrate to cure meats is cheaper than other methods. So what is one to do? First look to local butchers and food producers and ask how they process their meats. There are ways to do it without nitrates and nitrites. These methods will usually result in products which are less pink, and more expensive. Of course my argument there is which do you prefer more expensive meat or cancer? Then consider switching your breakfast meat to sausage, or steak, and when you have that occasional slice of pizza opt for sausage instead of pepperoni. For an in depth discussion of this topic I encourage you to read this article from the Guardian “Yes, bacon really is killing us”.