The Cancer Prevention Coalition recommends that children should not eat more than 12 hot dogs per month because of the risk of cancer. If you must have your hot dog fix, look for those without sodium nitrite listed among the ingredients.
Processed meats and bacon
These meats almost always contain the same sodium nitrite found in hot dogs. You can find some without nitrites, but you’ll have to look for them in natural grocers or health food stores. Bacon is also high in saturated fat, which contributes to the risk of cancers, including breast cancer. Limiting your consumption of processed meats and saturated fats also benefits the heart.
Doughnuts contain hydrogenated oils, white flour, sugar, and acrylamides. Essentially, they’re one of the worst cancer foods you can possibly eat. Reader’s Digest calls doughnuts “disastrous” as a breakfast food, and many experts agree it’s probably one of the worst ways to start the day.
Fries are made with hydrogenated oil and fried at high temperatures. Some chains even add sugar to their fry recipe to make them even more irresistible. Not only do they clog your arteries with saturated fat and trans fat, they also contain acrylamides. They should be called “cancer fries,” not French fries.
Chips / crackers / cookies
These generally contain white flour and sugar as well as trans fats, but it’s not enough to simply look for these ingredients on the label; you have to actually “decode” the ingredients list that food manufacturers use to deceive consumers. They do this by hiding ingredients (such as hiding MSG in yeast extract, or by fiddling with serving sizes so they can claim the food is trans fat free, even when it contains trans fats (the new Girl Scout cookies use this trick).
Hydrogenated oil is the process of forcing hydrogen gas into oil at high pressure and temperature. Which the essential fatty acids have been converted to a different form chemically, known as a trans fat, to prolong their shelf life. In some highly hydrogenated oils like margarine, trans fats can make up almost half of the total fat content. It is used to take the place of butter in many baked item.
The unstable fatty acids in oils are unsaturated fats, which have been determined to be healthier for consumers, acting to reduce cholesterol in some cases. Trans fats work to increase LDL, or "bad" cholesterol, and they also decrease HDL cholesterol, which is "good" cholesterol. This means that the fats in hydrogenated oil are far more damaging than even saturated fats, which medical professionals have already determined to be harmful.
To avoid listing trans fats, or to claim “trans fat free” on their label, food manufacturers simply adjust the serving size until the trans fat content falls under 0.5 grams per serving. This is how you get modern food labels with serving sizes that essentially equate to a single bite of food. Not exactly a “serving” of food, is it?
The acrylamide factor
Since trans fats are often formed during the frying process, we should also talk about acrylamides. Acrylamides are not added into food, they are created during the frying process. When starchy foods are subjected to high heat, acrylamides form. A Swedish study found that acrylamides cause cancer in rats, and more studies are under way to confirm the understanding that acrylamides also cause cancer in humans.
Sodium nitrite (and nitrates)
Food companies add sodium nitrite into certain foods on purpose. This carcinogen is added to processed meats, hot dogs, bacon, and any other meat that needs a reddish color to look “fresh.” Decades ago when meats were preserved, it was done with salt. But in the mid 20th century, food manufacturers started using sodium nitrite in commercial preservation. This chemical is responsible for the pinkish color in meat to which consumers have grown accustomed. Although today the use of refrigeration is largely what protects consumers from botulism and bacteria, manufacturers still add sodium nitrite to make the meat look pinkish and fresh.
The nitrites themselves are not the problem. People get more nitrites from vegetables than they do from meat, according to research by the University of Minnesota. During the digestion process, however, sodium nitrite is converted to nitrosamine, and that’s where the cancer problems begin. Nitrosamine is a carcinogen, but since it is not technically an ingredient, its presence can be easily overlooked on the packaging. Nitrosamines are also found in food items that are pickled, fried, or smoked; in things such as beer, cheese, fish byproducts, and tobacco smoke.
by Mike Adams