WHO: Processed meat causes cancer but how much is dangerous

Dr.Joel Kahn weighs in the new WHO report that calls out bacon and processed meats.

Monday meant some bad news for meat eaters.

A new review by the World Health Organization is out putting bacon on the same list of carcinogens as cigarette smoke.

Dr. Michael Kraut from the Providence Cancer Center offered some insight into the report.

The WHO's panel studied the use of meat and processed meat to see if it contained any hazards, Kraut said.

"The study did conclude that processed meat such as bacon can cause cancer in a big enough dose," he said.

Processed meats which were included in the study in addition to bacon includes sausage and hot dogs, among others.

"In order to turn these things from their natural state into something more tasteful we're talking about smoking them," Kraut said. "When you do something like that, you can introduce carcinogens and that can cause cancer.

"If you get a big enough dose of that you can get into trouble."

What is a big dose?

"Like most things, there is a problem of moderation," Kraut said. "If you are the type of person who eats bacon once a week, you probably won't have any trouble. But if you are the type of person who likes to eat a couple slices every day, you can have a problem."

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