There is no doubt that children love hot dogs. There is something about this quick snack that makes it attractive. You probably remember how excited we were while they were preparing in the microwave when we were kids. As a matter of fact, most of us considered the nights when hot dogs were served as dinner as special moments.
We should also not forget that hot dogs are frequently used on picnics organized for special events like 4th of July. According to some statistics, Americans use more than 155 million hot dogs during this holiday. While it is true that hot dogs are popular in America in every season, the same stats show that more than 7 billion wieners are consumed between Memorial and Labor Day.
L.A. Times has reported that children who consume more than a dozen of hot dogs a month have 900% more chances of developing leukemia. This is a study conducted by a USC epidemiologist.
According to two other reports focused on the same problem, children born to mothers who consume at least four hot dogs a month while they are pregnant have double the chance of experiencing brain tumors.
The situation is same in children with fathers who had hot dogs regularly before conception.
See also: You Will Never Eat a Hot Dog Again After Watching of These Videos
Hot Dogs Contain Nitrites
Does this information concern you? Well, you are right.
There are many people who are wondering why hot dogs are not he best food they can eat. The answer is simple – they contain nitrite additives that lead to the formation of carcinogens.
An initiative to ban nitrites
Three separate scientific studies were conducted in the last year and each of them has confirmed that eating hot dogs can increase the probability of developing childhood cancer.
Peters and others were focused on finding the connection between the chances of developing leukemia in children and consumption of certain types of food. They have analyzed the development of infants and children to age of 10 born in LA county between 1980 and 1987. This study confirmed that children who took more than a dozen of hot dogs each month had 900% more chances of developing childhood leukemia. The same goes for children whose fathers consumed more than 12 hot dogs per month before they were conceived.
Furthermore, Savitz and Sarasua (researchers and scientists) have analyzed the data related to childhood cancer in the city of Denver and this analysis has shown that children born to mothers who ate more than 4 hot dogs a month while they were pregnant has increased the risk of appearance of brain tumors in their children for two times. In addition, children who were given hot dogs in their earliest age for at least 4 times per month had increased chances of developing brain cancer.
Finally, Bunin and others confirmed that pregnant mothers who ate hot dogs has significantly increased the risk of childhood cancer.
Why hot dogs stimulate the development of cancer?
Hot dogs are rich in nitrites that serve as preservatives and they are here to prevent and fight botulism. While they are cooked, nitrites create formations together with amines that are found in the meat naturally. The final result is a carcinogenic N-Nitroso compound. Many scientists believe that nitrites can create these formations together with amines in the stomach. As we said before, these compounds are carcinogenic and they have been related to various cancers – bladder, stomach, oral cavity and brain cancer to name few.
Certain veggies come with nitrites too, are they dangerous?
Nitrites can be found in many different products including green veggies like celery, spinach and green lettuce. But, as we all know vegetables can actually protect us from cancer. The explanation is simple. Vegetables rich in nitrites are packed with vitamin D and C and they prevent the development of harmful N-nitroso compounds. As a result of that, vegetables are healthy and useful when it comes to cancer prevention. In addition, all cured meats have nitrites including fish and bacon.
So, Should We Stay Away From Hot Dogs?
Yes and no. The truth is that not all hot dogs available in the stores have nitrites. The advance of technology has made the use of nitrites almost obsolete. There are other ways to achieve preservation. There are many hot dogs free of nitrites and you cannot tell the difference when it comes to taste. The only difference is in the color – nitrite-free hot dogs come in brownish color. If they are prepared in the right way, they are completely healthy and safe.
A few things you need to do in order to be safe from the negative effects of hot dogs
- Avoid the consumption of hot dogs with nitrites. This is crucial for children and future parents.
- Ask the store manager to get nitrite-free hot dogs.
- Ask the school where your kid is going whether they use nitrite-free hot dogs and explain why they are a better solution.
- Send a letter or an e-mail to the FDA and ask them to make companies provide proper labels for their hot dog products.