5 Top Cancer-Causing Holiday Foods

 

It is that time of the year again – the much-awaited holiday season that brings along a lot of fun, joy, and food. From fat stuffed turkeys to shortbread cookies, Christmas tree cupcakes, and several other once-a-year treats, this time of the year is all about fun, family, and food.

But did you know that your favorite holiday delicacies may cause cancer? Find out about five top cancer-causing holiday food, and this year, promise yourself the gift of health even during the holidays!

Alcohol

Drinking may not be limited to a specific season or time of the year, but it is definitely a critical aspect of the holiday season. Statistics indicate that an average American’s alcohol consumption increases by 100% between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Since there is a lot more socializing, this eventually leads to overindulgence, especially during the holiday season.

While excessive alcohol consumption brings along significant productivity problems, its usage has been linked to several cancers. In fact, alcohol consumption is the second most common preventable risk factor for cancer (after tobacco). Use of alcohol can lead to cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, colon, rectum, and breast. Alcohol consumption may also lead to cancer of the stomach.

For most types of cancers, there is a direct relation. The more alcohol you drink, the higher is your risk of developing cancer. But for some types of cancer, such as breast cancer, even consumption in smaller amounts can increase your risk of developing cancer.

So this year, toast with an alcohol-free nog.

Refined Sugar

From pecan and pumpkin pies to eggnog, sweet potato casserole, and cocktails, refined sugar is all around during the holiday season. And while there are some very obvious sugary edibles like cake and candies, there are several seemingly nutritious holiday treats that are actually packed with sugar.

Indeed sugar is essential. After all, it feeds all the cells in the body and provides you with the energy to get moving. Moreover, as sugar gets digested in the body, it releases serotonin, a neurochemical known for improving mood and alleviating anxiety. But on the flip side, excessive use of refined sugar can increase your risk of cancer.

Excessive use of refined sugar adds to your waistline, and obesity is a major cause of cancer, so there is an indirect link. Additionally, all cells need sugar, so do cancer cells. Cancer cells multiply really quickly, and for growth at an aggressive rate, they need a lot more sugar than normal body cells. Unfortunately, there is no way to tell your body to provide sugar to normal cells but not cancer cells. So all the sugar that you are going to dump into your body during this holiday season may increase your risk of cancer in two ways. The extra calories from the desserts and sugar will add to your weight. Moreover, if there is an undiagnosed tumor in the body, consuming too much sugar can fuel its growth.

So why take the risk? Cut down on refined sugar and reduce your risk of cancer.

Microwave Popcorn

The much-awaited holiday season is the perfect time of the year where you can catch up on all your favorite movies. And as you snuggle up by the fire and get ready for a fun movie night, there is an instinctive desire for popcorns.

What is more convenient than a bag of popcorn that you can pop in a microwave, and you get a tasty snack in no time?

But this popular quick holiday snack can cause several types of cancers, including cancers of the liver and pancreas. Surprisingly, it is not the kernel or the microwave that leads to cancer. Instead, it is all about the extra chemicals, preservatives, artificial flavors and even the paper bag that are linked with an increased risk of cancer.

So is it worth taking the risk? This holiday season, go back to the basics and let your kernels pop in a pot instead of your microwave.

Processed Flour

Looking for sweet treat inspirations to celebrate the holiday season?

From shortbread cookies to pretzels, gingerbread man, and pancakes, the choices are endless.

But each of your favorite sweet delicacies straight from the oven has one essential ingredient; flour.

You may have heard that processed flour is not good for health, but you may not be aware of the reason? Processed flour undergoes refinement processes that deprive it of all of its healthy nutrients. Moreover, certain chemicals used to process flour remain a part of it and can increase your risk of cancer. Furthermore, processed flour has a high glycemic rate, which means it digests quickly and results in a rapid increase in blood sugar levels. You already know how sugar is linked with cancer.

This holiday season, stock up some whole grain flour and give your loved ones all the sweetness without worrying about cancer.

Red Meat

Most people prefer fat, whole turkeys, and large hams during the holidays, but high-end beef cuts are another favorite holiday season delicacy. So as you prepare your favorite steak, know that excessive use of red meat is closely linked with an increased risk of colon cancer. Moreover, processed red meat (that often comes in the form of sausages, pepperoni, and beef jerky) is far more dangerous. They are packed with chemicals, preservatives, and artificial flavors, some of which are well-known carcinogens.

This holiday season, ditch all processed, go organic but most importantly, limit your intake of red meat.

Bottom Line

Several other holiday foods are linked with an increased risk of cancer. By being mindful of what you eat and in what quantities, you can stay fit and healthy as you create memories with your friends and family.

 

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