CHICKEN has been linked to a higher risk of getting cancer for the first time, it has been reported.
Britons consume around 1.3bn chickens every year and poultry has widely been regarded as a healthy alternative to red meat.
But Oxford University researchers have found that eating chicken is associated with a higher risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a type of blood cancer.
The study also found it is associated with an increased chance of prostate cancer in men, the Sunday Times reports.
Researchers tracked 475,000 middle-aged Britons from 2006-14, analysing their diet and the diseases they developed, and found 23,000 developed cancer.
“Poultry intake was positively associated with risk for malignant melanoma, prostate cancer and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma,” says the study.
“The positive associations of poultry intake with prostate cancer and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma require further investigation.”
The research – published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health – found there was an “association” frequent consumers of chicken have with certain cancer.
But the study didn’t pin down exactly what link is and it could be t could mean that the meat contains a carcinogen
It could be something about the way some chicken is cooked, for example by frying, or a completely different factor.
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Research published in the US earlier this year, however, found women who switched to poultry from beef, lamb or pork were 28 per cent less likely to get breast tumours.
When it comes to red meat, the NHS says there is “probably a link between eating a lot of red and processed meat and bowel (colorectal) cancer“.
Moderate red meat eaters are significantly more likely to develop bowel cancer than occasional consumers, the largest UK study of its kind says.
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