Curbing meat consumption 

TureskyMasonic Scholar and medicinal chemistry faculty member Robert Turesky, Ph.D., is working to measure a cooked meat carcinogen called PhIP and has developed ways to quantify it in hair and urine.

Turesky’s work comes in light of a recent World Health Organization study that he and 22 other scientists led on the link between cancer and the overconsumption of red or processed meats.

After evaluating 800 studies on meat and cancer, he and his peers found that processed meats could contribute to colorectal cancer because of their nitrates, while red meats pose a risk when they’re grilled, pan-fried, or cooked at higher temperatures.

“If there’s a take-home message, it’s not to stop eating meat products, but to diversify your diet."

While Turesky and others have illuminated the risks associated with meat, they also are quick to point out that the key to mitigating cancer risk is eating in moderation. "Eat these types of meats in moderation, but make sure you’re eating vegetables, fruits, other protein sources, poultry, and fish as well,” he says.


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