WCRF statement on red meat

Professor Martin Wiseman, Medical and Scientific Adviser for World Cancer Research Fund, said: “This meat industry-funded paper is not a systematic review of the evidence and does not change the fact that there is convincing evidence that red and processed meat increase risk of bowel cancer. This is why we recommend limiting red meat to 500g, cooked weight, per week and avoiding processed meat.

“It is true that red meat contains valuable nutrients and this is why we do not recommend avoiding it altogether. But to suggest, as the authors of this review have done, that there is ‘no evidence’ that a moderate intake of lean red meat has any negative health effects is wrong.

“Essentially, the public has a choice between believing our findings – which are those of an independent panel of scientists after a systematic and transparent review of the complete global evidence – or the conclusions of this review.”

back to top

About WCRF

World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) raises awareness that cancer is largely preventable and helps people make choices to reduce their chances of developing the disease.

This includes research into how cancer risk is related to diet, physical activity, and weight management, and education programmes that highlight the fact that about a third of cancers could be prevented through changes to lifestyle. For more information on the charity’s work, visit www.wcrf-uk.org

The WCRF report, called Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Cancer: a Global Perspective, was launched in November 2007 and is the most comprehensive report ever published on the link between cancer and lifestyle. For more information, visit www.dietandcancerreport.org