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The Physicians Committee



Turner Field Billboard Warns Braves Fans of Cancer-Hot Dog Link

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Americans typically consume 7 billion hot dogs—818 each second. But a huge billboard near Atlanta’s Turner Field warns baseball fans that chowing down on hot dogs as they watch the games could seriously damage their health. The billboard is sponsored by the Cancer Project, a PCRM affiliate, which also sent a letter asking the stadium to place warning labels at hot dogs stands.

Warning: Hot Dogs Can Strike You Out - For good.

Located on the east side of I-75, the billboard features an image of hot dogs sticking out of a cigarette pack labeled “Unlucky Strike.” It reads: “Warning: Hot dogs can strike you out—for good.”

“A hot dog a day could send you to an early grave,” said Joseph Gonzales, a Cancer Project dietitian. “Processed meats can increase your risk for diabetes, heart disease, and various types of cancer. Like cigarettes, hot dogs should come with a warning label that helps baseball fans and other consumers understand the health risk.”

In 2007, the American Institute for Cancer Research published a landmark report showing that just one 50-gram serving of processed meat (about the amount in one hot dog) consumed daily increases the risk of colorectal cancer, on average, by 21 percent. Every year, about 150,000 Americans are diagnosed with colorectal cancer and approximately 50,000 die of it.

Studies also show a strong link between other types of cancer and processed meats. The NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study last year found that processed red meat was associated with a 10 percent increased risk of prostate cancer with every 10 grams of increased intake. A study in Taiwan, also released last year, showed that consumption of cured and smoked meat can increase children’s risk for leukemia. A study in Australia this year found that women’s risk for ovarian cancer increased as a result of eating processed meats.

A review in the journal Diabetologia last year found that those who regularly eat processed meats increase their risk for diabetes by 41 percent.

To view the billboard, visit CancerProject.org.



 

PCRM Online, June 2010

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