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10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day

While some of the food we eat is quite obviously bad for us, such as junk food and sweets laden with sugar and fats, carcinogenic substances are found even in products advertised as being healthy.

When it comes to food, what we don’t see sometimes are the not-so-good parts of our everyday diet that has the potential to be harmful to our holistic health, not just immediately but over a more extended period too.

There is the potential that some of the food we believe is good for our health and features heavily in our healthy diets is actually carcinogenic, and this is something that is not outwardly obvious. The information is only gleaned through scientifically-backed research knowledge.

A carcinogen is any substance or compound that has the potential to cause cancer, and these can include everything from environmental aspects such as heavy pollution or lifestyle habits, such as smoking. Carcinogenic compounds can also be found in some common everyday foods, either in the foods’ natural format or they can develop as we cook them in specific ways.

Surprising, isn’t it?

And what’s more surprising is that some of the examples of carcinogenic food you will see throughout this information will identify as “healthy foods,” however, we need to be super careful to know what healthy actually means in terms of carcinogenic.

So what are the really common carcinogenic food you probably eat every day?

Let’s have a look.

Processed Meat

Processed meats are those heavily manufactured meats that do not represent the original for they were in, and often made in such a way that means they are heavily processed with many additives and preservatives.

Some examples of processed meats are:10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Processed Meat

  • Canned meats, such as corned beef or canned hams
  • Frankfurter hotdogs
  • In general, sausages (all sausages are processed to a certain degree, but some more so than others.)
  • Luncheon meat
  • Ham

A lot of processed meats are filled with preservatives and fillers, such as salts, sugars, and gasses, to ensure they retain a longer shelf life and do not perish before they are purchased.

When heavily processed, meats may be considered carcinogenic. The best thing we can do to reduce the risk is to switch the processed meats for pure white meat, such as chicken or turkey, or fish.

Smoked meats and chargrilled meats fall into the same carcinogen category as processed meats. Smoked meats contain chemical preservatives to provide a longer shelf life.

Red Meat

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Red MeatIn more recent years, there have been trends of people shunning red meat in favor of a plant-based diet, which can be beneficial to health and help ward off cancer since red meat may be considered a carcinogenic food. Red meat has been tentatively linked to cancers such as colorectal cancer and potentially prostate and pancreatic cancer.

Red meat should always be limited to no more than 2-3 portions per week since it is a heavy protein; however, you can get a good amount of protein as a substitute in foods such as pulses, which are super versatile and can replace red meat in practically any dish.

Convenience and Fast Foods

We see that life gets busier and busier, and in some walks of life, the days are gone when you prepare and eat a homemade meal cooked from scratch from the freshest and healthiest ingredients.

Convenience and fast foods hold such a firm place in society. They fill the gap of the “meal on the move” or when people simply do not have the time to make and consume a highly nutritious meal.

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Fast-Food

So it’s not surprising to know that many fast foods and convenience meals can be considered carcinogenic, and this could be due to a combination of factors such as:

  • Preservatives
  • Excessive fats
  • Excessive sugars
  • Low-quality ingredients
  • Shelf time

The best alternative to this is to make sure that you make any food you need from home and prepare meals in advance, especially for work lunches and snacks.

Wholegrain bread, salads, and fresh cruditées are going to be amazing to replace convenience foods.

Over-Browned Foods

We have probably all had a kitchen mishap where you lose track of time, and the food you are cooking comes out of the oven with more than a fabulous summer tan!

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Burned FoodsWhile most people would consider this food now ruined and inedible and pop it in the compost heap, you might be surprised to know that even attempting to eat something, such as over roasted potatoes and vegetables, that has been over-browned during the cooking process can actually be carcinogenic.

When food is overcooked to the point where it takes on a whole different persona, it releases something called acrylamide, which may be considered a carcinogen.

The best way to cook food is to only brown it just lightly if that is suitable for the food; otherwise, keeping the ingredients as close to their natural color as possible is something to stove for, for the sake of your health.


Alcohol may inhibit the absorption of vital cancer-fighting nutrients, and the body turns ethanol into acetaldehyde, which is a known carcinogen.

Alcohol has long been considered detrimental to health in most aspects. It may be linked to the developments of quite a few cancers, such as:10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Alcohol

  • Liver Cancer
  • Breast Cancer
  • Esophageal
  • Colorectal

Alcohol should always be limited for health purposes. Still, there may be evidence to suggest that alcohol can produce carcinogenic elements during the fermenting and distilling process.

While it is easy to say that alcohol is best removed from a holistically healthy regimen altogether, it may not be that easy for some people to achieve. This is the best case for the saying “everything in moderation.” As far as possible, stick to, or under, the recommended units of alcohol per week, or even better, only save a tipple for special occasions and events.

RelatedHow to Make Medicinal Kombucha at Home

Sugary Drinks

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Sugary DrinksIt’s not surprising to find this entry on the potential carcinogenic list. We are specifically talking about those sodas and sugary drinks that are not considered diet versions.

The carcinogenic element comes in as these drinks are heavily linked to weight gain. In essence, you are just drinking empty calories.

Weight gain, being overweight, or obese can significantly increase your chances of developing cancer, and diet sods can play a leading role in contributing to weight gain.

The best alternatives are carbonated water with some homemade flavored syrups in as a dash, sugar-free cordials, and homemade soda alternatives.

Canned Tomatoes

It is just as pertinent a point to be aware of the potential carcinogen compounds in your foods packaging, paying specific attention to cans.

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - CannedMost cans these days are lined with bisphenol-a (BPA), which has been linked to an increased risk of cancers. This is especially important to note with highly acidic can contents, such as canned tomatoes, as it can affect the BPA compound and leech into the canned ingredients.

Of course, to reduce this risk, we can eliminate cans altogether, grow our own tomatoes, or buy them fresh from your local greengrocer or farm shop.

Microwave Popcorn

Just about all microwave popcorn bags contain a chemical called PFOA or diacetyl.

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Microwaved PopcornThis may result in increased risks of cancers and lung damage, respectively. While it is convenient to have these pre-bagged popcorn bags ready to go, it is really a simple thing to make yourself without the risk of any carcinogenic ingredients.

It’s easy to make your own fresh popcorn with corn kernels, some grass-fed butter or coconut oil, and a brown paper bag! Making popcorn on the stovetop can also allow a person to avoid adding these compounds to the diet.

Related: Healthy Pringles: The Nutritious Leaves That Make Crispy Chips

White Carbohydrates

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - White CarbohydratesCarbohydrates aren’t white for nothing! “White” carbohydrates rank high on the glycemic index, meaning they more rapidly elevate blood sugar.

A recent study shows people whose diets had a high GI had a greater risk of being diagnosed with cancer.

To lower the overall glycemic index, add healthy fats and protein into pasta – that way, it will be healthier!

Refined Sugar

10 Carcinogenic Foods You Probably Eat Every Day - Refined SugarResearch conducted was back in 1931 found sugar provides fuel for tumors, allowing them to grow.

When cancer cells are exposed to sugars, they can increase their growth rate and produce more energy than normal cells. It allows tumor cells that would die otherwise due to lack of nutrition to remain alive and proliferate quickly. It also makes cancer more difficult to treat if not contained by surgery or chemotherapy.

It can be straightforward to avoid refined sugars entirely by switching to more naturally sweet compounds derived from nature, such as agave syrup, unrefined sugar, and honey.

For the full list of carcinogen foods and substances, you can check out the official pages for and 


All in all, carcinogenic compounds, foods, and cooking methods can be avoided, and this can increase your holistic health and reduce the risk of those carcinogens being a contributor to any cancer.

The best advice is to always grow and make your own food, using as little “unknown” packaging, etc., as possible, and opting for packaging you know about, such as paper bags and recycled materials.

When you avoid anything in this list and more, it may help you reduce the buildup of potential carcinogens in your body. It may reduce the risk of developing generalized and specific cancers.

Carcinogens can be avoided and should be avoided if you are conscious of your overall holistic health and lowering the risk of cancers developing.

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It is NOT red meat that is carcinogenic! Red meat turns dark and gray immediately after the blood in the meat is in contact with the oxygen. It is the nitrates used to preserve the red color of the meat that are carcinogenic. And the consumer will not pay for darkish/grayish meat products (which is not carcinogenic), instead, the consumer will pay for the illusion of fresh-looking, nitrate-saturated, red meat. This is the root of the problem, but misinformation and lack of good information are everywhere, including in this article.


Agreed. Most people haven’t a clue! But allow me to indulge for a moment. Its NOT the meat that is carcinogenic, its what is added to or fed to the meat, depending upon whether its before or after the butchering of the meat. Did you know, for example, that ROUNDUP has a new job? (No idea how ‘new’, but its currently happening) Its used now to DRY some grains. (dessicate) Of course, grains are fed to cattle, and it is not completely filtered out of the bovine through its organs. WE eat it. Same with grains for humans. No, not ALL farmers everywhere, but did you know that they are NOT required to label the product as dried with the ingredients in roundup? I have never seen it labeled as such. I am not allergic to wheat, but my GI system cannot tolerate bleached flour and bleached sugars. (Or perhaps its the commercial dessicant used to dry them…?) I CAN eat unbleached, organic flours and unbleached demerara sugar just fine. What do you suppose they bleach these things with nowadays? It used to be cow bones. NO idea what, now, because I could NOT find reference to the bleaching agent when I tried to hunt it down. WE ARE WHAT WE EAT!

Wow, talk about misinformation, lol

Well said Peter. I wonder if the disinformation is on purpose though, since the elites like Bill Gates have publicly said that the population will not be eating meat in the future. (At least if they have their way).
Hard to know what the truth is nowadays when everyone is being censored.

Red meat has a lot of iron in it and iron is a heavy metal. I think that iron increases the risk of cancer. My barber used to get red meat from the butcher shop next door every day. He got a colon cancer the size of a grapefruit. I helped him straighten out his diet and after his operation, he is still alive 5 years later.

Hmmmm? Why doesn’t my deer meat turn? Its dark but it doesn’t turn brown or gray..

Beef that has a little greenish on it and has turned dark is the best tasting. Deer meat hung for two or three weeks it cool weather is much better tasting and a whole lot more tender. I woot have never known that until a friend of mine {Philip Edwards.} cooked some up. That deer was so good. Meat with all the additives is much more likely to ruin and still look good. After two or three good frost the bacteria in the air is significantly lowered. Deer can hang in the shade with the hide on just Gutted and washed the insides as much as possible. with the head removed so there is good drainage. I haven’t had one ruin yet.

It is my understanding that grass-fed red meat is a healthy food. It’s only when you’re eating GMO grain fed cattle that the meat becomes carcinogenic. Red meat has been demonized unfairly, and shouldn’t be on this list, UNLESS the aforementioned facts are presented.

darn!! so we should eat BUGS as both Klaus Shwab and Billy Goat Gates would have us???
c’mon man!

So depressing. To think I should give up eating all the things that make life worth living just so I can prolong my existence in hell on earth.

My thoughts also

Reminds me of a conversation I witnessed 40 years ago when suckers could still smoke in the office (and anywhere else the damn well wished).
Smoker: “Well, we all have to die sometime”.
Pissed off non (but reluctant passive) smoker: “Yeh, but it’s not a race”.

Race you to the grave. Last one to die a painful debilitating death from some preventable disease is a cissy.

The main thing is to cut down on sugar and alcohol and eat a VARIED diet.
If you’re surviving on burgers, pizza, and coke, you will almost definitely invite trouble along the line.
Burgers, ‘dogs’, pizza’s, and coke (or any carbonised soft drink) will make you FAT, UNHEALTHY, and almost certainly ILL.

And here I always thought the carbon on burnt toast, although not fully activated, was a good way to sweep poisons from the body,

Me too……I was always taught that burnt toast was good for your stomach…at least if it is GMO Free bread…Hmmm?

At 76yrs young,we grew up eating burnt toast. Favorite was whole wheat & we often “accidentally” burnt it.

Believe VERY LITTLE of what you hear… and EVEN LESS of what you read; such as articles such as these written by someone that obviously doesn’t know or understand anything about it, only believes everything the AGENCIES and PHARMA tells them.

I’m glad to see so many others agreeing that red meat in and of itself is not carcinogenic. On the contrary, organic pasture raised red meat contains many vitamins and minerals needed by the body like B12. Of course eating an absurd excess may result in health problems, but the people who consume that much red meat are by and large getting it from cheap low quality fast food outlets. Part of the reason why studies find a possible link is because too much protein (far more than what an individual would need in a day) is carcinogenic because the body shifts excess to pathways that increase cancer risk. That would apply to individuals going overboard on protein shakes much more than eating a moderate amount of high quality grass fed red meat would. I’d like to see the red meat section replaced with protein shakes, especially those filled with soy. Actually, a section for unfermented soy would be great too since it’s linked to breast cancer but promoted as a healthy alternative to red meat. (This is not the case for traditionally fermented soy like miso and soy sauce just to be clear.)

There is a lot of sense and some proven facts I already knew about these carcinogenic foods. This is a powerful warning, people should take it seriously.

My understanding is that the more meat that you eat increases your chance of colon cancer. It doesn’t matter if its grass fed or range free.
If you eat a lot of it , it can be bad for you.
I have a friend who raised his own beef, pork and goats. He ate some kind of animal flesh at every meal. he drank gallons of coffee ( which is a catalyst for cancer) he recently had colon cancer and had surgery to remove three feet of his colon.

I am very glad to see that people are aloud to speak out on this post. You learn so much of what is really out there. I say buy from your local farmer and you won’t be disappointed. It’s easier to keep an en on what the animals are being feed.

Gotta love (NOT) the scare tactics and fear mongering attempts of people with agendas. Pity them.

Huh??? “Limit yourself to known packaging and recycled materials…” What is known about recycled materials that come from someone else??? The only recycled materials I feel comfortable with are the ones I have control over such as soil from composted vegetation.

Sounds like people in a hunter gatherer society must live forever, or at least not die of cancer, just often starve to death as young children./

I’m a little disappointed in this article. It is very misleading by saying that many of the foods are thought to be healthy. Most people know that these foods can cause cancer. Yes, red meat. It takes a long time to digest and can coat your colon causing difficulties in pulling water as well as causing cancer. Not just the additives. Also the article was lacking in editorial help. One sentence says there are two reasons for canned being unhealthy but after the first reason there is no second. I hope the book I ordered from them is better than this article. 🤞 😊

I also heard that the oils in the microwave popcorn negatively affect brain health.

So its grass for every meal as soon as we grow 3 more stomachs to digest it wondering if Mr. Bill Gates had any input for this article this one is for file #13 for sure last thing I want to die of is boredom and the above is the perfect recipe for just that.

I paid for both the E and hard copy of Lost Herbs. I have not received the hard copy. Roberta Willinson, 115 Springcreek Drive Kalispell, Mt 59901 406-249-4680

Hi Roberta,

Please check your personal email. Our support team has sent you an email regarding your order.

Many blessings and good health!

hello, stacy, your article was a start, in the right direction, but you left out the fact that dairy products, specifically milk protein, switches on the effect of carcinogens, in the body, according to research at Cornell University, in the 1970’s, by Dr. William Campbell. you can have a lot of carcinogens, in your body, and not get cancer, until you start consuming milk, cheese, butter or cream. and milk is not natural for any adult mammals, like us, anyway. anything unnatural, causes disease, sometimes fatal. the first thing I’d say us for everyone to stop consuming those “killer” foods, namely, all foods made from milk. milk is only good for infant mammals (babies, up to age 4), and certainly not milk from a species do far removed, genetically, from our own (namely, cows), whose protein mixture alone will cause unhealthiness, in human babies.
and the next important point, is to try and avoid pesticides, in fruits and veggies, which are highly toxic, to the human nervous system. and preservatives are bad, not because of being carcinogenic alone, but because of killing good bacteria, in our digestive system, which causes alzheimers and other forms of dementia, which collectively kill one third of all seniors, who die, according to recent research in switzerland and italy. and yes, sugar is the only fuel source for cancer cells, as otto warburg proved in 1931, but refined sugar is a double whammy, depriving healthy cells of nutrition to fight cancer cells, because most nutrients have been removed, in it’s refinement. and white flour also has been refined, removing nutrients necessary to fight a whole host of diseases. and modern intensive farming has removed minerals from our soil, and hence our food, grown in it, further contributing to disease. and antibiotics and antibacterials also kill good gut bacteria, like preservatives, as well.

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