It’s probably not something you think about every day, whether or not the foods you are eating could contain carcinogens, but with almost 1.5 million people diagnosed with some type of cancer just last year, perhaps it’s time to look at what is in our foods that could be causing such a huge number of new cancer patients.
1. Genetically-modified Organisms (GMOs)
It goes without saying that GMOs have no legitimate place in any cancer-free diet, especially now that both GMOs and the chemicals used to grow them have been shown to cause rapid tumor growth. But GMOs are everywhere, including in most food derivatives made from conventional corn, soybeans, and canola. However, you can avoid them by sticking with certified organic, certified non-GMO verified, and locally-grown foods that are produced naturally without biotechnology.
2. Non-organic Fruits
Non-organic fruits are contaminated with pesticides and nitrogen fertilizers. Contamination can lead women to have babies with lower birth weights. Some non-organic fruits are also subjected to hormones, which make them grow larger. Apples, oranges, strawberries and grapes are the most contaminated non-organic fruits.
3. Canned Tomatoes
You’ve likely heard how the nutrient Lycopene in tomatoes lowers cancer risks, but that benefit is completely cancelled out when the lining of canned tomatoes contain chemicals that disrupt hormonal activity in the body. Since tomatoes are so acidic, the chemical BPA actually leeches from the lining into the tomatoes. This toxic chemical has been linked to different cancers, heart disease and reproductive problems. Next time you feel like making a nice red sauce, go with a glass jar or stew the tomatoes yourself.
4. Processed Meats
Lunch meat tends to be a favorite food, especially among the younger crowds out there. Unfortunately, food items such as ham, turkey, bacon, sausage, and even hot dogs, are loaded with chemical preservatives to help the meat appear fresh and healthy. These preservatives can cause cancer within the human body, though. Both sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite have been known to increase the chances of contracting colon and other forms of cancer. Choosing uncured meat products made without the use of either preservative, and preferably grass-fed sources, is the best option for avoiding this issue altogether. However, even eating processed meats in moderation can be fine. For those that eat it regularly, though, it may be time to switch to something on the healthier side of the spectrum in the near future. Be sure to check the labels on the meat you purchase within the store, or ask an associate at said store before buying.
5. Microwave Popcorn
From the chemically-lined bag to the actual contents, microwave popcorn is at the center of lung cancer debates around the world. Not only are the kernels and oil likely GMO (which the manufacturer does not have to disclose) unless organic, the fumes released from artificial butter flavoring contain diacetyl, which is toxic to humans. Make your own organic popcorn the old-fashioned way – it tastes better, doesn’t release toxic fumes, and is a healthier choice for you.
6. Potato Chips