America’s favorite guilty pleasure could increase the risk of a fatal cancer by almost 20 percent, according to a new study.
Eating just two slices a day can bump up the risk of diagnosis of pancreatic cancer by 19 percent, found the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. Those consuming double that amount had a 38 percent chance, while those who consumed a third more had a 57 percent chance.
"Findings from this meta-analysis indicate that processed meat consumption is positively associated with pancreatic cancer risk," the authors conclude.
The study, reported in the British Journal of Cancer, examined data from 11 previous studies of a total of 6,643 pancreatic-cancer cases.
Cutting down on the fatty meat could prove as difficult as quitting smoking for some. Bacon and other rich, high-calorie foods have been found to be as addictive as some drugs. A 2010 study reported in the journal Nature Neuroscience found that rats given the choice between junk food and healthier food preferred the former, and exhibited dangerous, addictive behavior as their health declined and their weight ballooned.