As leaders in the industrial world we have developed the perfect recipe for cancer. It is called a kids’ meal. It is packed full of saturated fat, refined carbs and dairy all of which raises the hormone Insulin Growth-like factor-1. IGF-1 increases cell growth. It is a non-discriminatory hormone because it causes proliferation of all cells including damaged and renegade cells.
How often you choose this food for your child matters. It is dose dependent meaning that the more they eat, the greater the risk. If you eat out a lot and order kids’ meals for your child, this is risky business. Saving money on a kids’ meal does not save money in the long run. It will cost your child their health down the line. We are now seeing childhood cancers escalate. Causation or correlation? Do you really want to wait to find out when your child’s health is at stake?
It was 2015 when the International Agency for Research on Cancer, one of the arms of the World Health Organization (WHO,) came out stating that processed meat is a class 1 carcinogen. This was determined by 22 experts from 10 countries after reviewing over 800 studies. This puts processed meat in the same category as asbestos, arsenic and tobacco. This research is why the American Institute for Cancer Research recommends very little, if any, processed meat be consumed.
In America though—and yes, we have exported it—our standard American diet is full of highly processed foods which includes highly processed meat.
“Processed meat” is the term given to meat that is salted, cured, fermented, smoked or preserved in a way which enhances flavor. Various methods used in preserving these meats have also been shown to cause cancer in laboratory studies. Some common examples of processed meat are:
- Hot dogs
- Corned beef
- Deli meats
- Lunch meats
There is strong evidence that serving even small amounts of processed meat may lead to certain cancers.
Typically, these meats are high in calories which causes weight gain. Being overweight and obese is a risk factor for at least 12 types of cancer.
Cutting down on processed meats is a good idea and cutting them out completely is best of all! In order to avoid processed meats it will take only a little thought and experimentation. So what will you eat if you avoid processed meat? People are creatures of habit so you must develop a plan to change your usual habits. Look closely at your grocery list. Scratch out the risky items then write in healthier alternatives. When shopping, if those processed foods start “calling your name”, simply acknowledge them and state that was your old choice but now that you know better you recognize that they are poison to you and your family. Then keep walking! Over time, one good choice will lead to another. Eventually you will not even be tempted.
Skip the kids’ meals!
- Instead of school lunches, send your child with soup or salad, veggie wrap or bean burrito. Encourage your child to be the leader in this food revolution by being a role model to others.
- Have fast food ready at home. Batch cook for the week to save time and money. Always have in the refrigerator salad ingredients and beans with a big bowl of rice or quinoa to make “bowls” or have leftovers in the freezer to reheat.
- If you do eat out then do your homework on what is the healthiest (smartest) option on the menu. Make up your own kids’ meal from the “sides” – fruits, vegetables, whole grains, etc.
- And always, always make your beverage of choice WATER!
Help your child develop healthy food preferences and praise them when they make healthy food choices. It is the single most important gift you can give your child!