Red Meats Linked to Aggressive Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer incidence and severity linked to meat consumption

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Regularly eating hot dogs and hamburgers is not considered a wise practice for a number of health reasons. For men, there's one more reason to avoid eating meat.

A new study has found that eating ground beef and processed meat is linked to aggressive prostate cancers. The risks appear to be highest in well-done meats that are grilled or barbecued.

Avoid eating well-done grilled and barbecued meats.

John Witte, Ph.D, professor of epidemiology at the University of California, San Francisco, led the research. He told dailyRx, "It's unclear exactly what's driving the association. But we do see that the red meat effect is strongest in those who eat grilled and BBQ meat cooked the longest, suggesting that it has something to do with how the meat is prepared.”

Witte's team analyzed the meat consumption habits of 1,000 men (470 with prostate cancer and 512 controls). Participants completed questionnaires about their overall meat intake, meat preparation and the doneness level of the meat they consumed. 

Researchers believe the association is due to the increased level of carcinogens in well-done meat that's been grilled or barbecued. Interestingly, there was no association between eating rare or medium cooked ground beef and aggressive prostate cancer.

These findings support previous studies showing a correlation between meat consumption and prostate cancer.

This study was published in the online journal PLoS ONE.

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
November 25, 2011
Last Updated:
November 29, 2011