Ultra Processed Foods Linked to Cancer Risk

Ultra Processed Foods Linked to Cancer Risk

A study led by researchers from the University of Bristol and the International Agency for Research on Cancer suggests that increased consumption of ultra-processed foods (UPFs) may be linked to a higher risk of cancers in the upper aerodigestive tract, including the mouth, throat, and esophagus. UPFs include “soft drinks, sweet or savoury packaged snacks, confectionery, packaged breads and buns, reconstituted meat products and pre-prepared frozen or shelf-stable dishes.” Analyzing data from 450,111 adults over approximately 14 years, the study challenges the notion that obesity alone is responsible for this association. Despite a small contribution from increased body fat, the statistical link between UPF consumption and the risk of these cancers remained significant. The study raises the possibility that additives and contaminants in UPFs, rather than just their impact on body weight, may explain the observed cancer risk. The authors emphasize the need for further research to explore additional mechanisms underlying this association.


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Taylor Marks is a certified holistic health coach and professionally trained chef from The Institute of Culinary Education. Her passions include the latest research in health science, culinary arts, holistic wellness, and guiding others towards feeling their best.