21% of bowel cancers are caused by processed or red meat
86% of lung cancers are caused by tobacco
19% of all cancers caused by tobacco compared to
3% of all cancers ascribed to red or processed meat
Source: Cancer Research UK
It is the chemicals involved in the processing which could be increasing the risk of cancer. High temperature cooking, such as on a barbeque, can also create carcinogenic chemicals.
In the UK, around six out of every 100 people get bowel cancer at some point in their lives.
If they were all had an extra 50g of bacon a day for the rest of their lives then the risk would increase by 18% to around seven in 100 people getting bowel cancer.
„So that’s one extra case of bowel cancer in all those 100 lifetime bacon-eaters,“ argued Sir David Spiegelhalter, a risk professor from the University of Cambridge.