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Nutritional evaluation of lowering consumption of meat and meat products in the Nordic context

image of Nutritional evaluation of lowering consumption of meat and meat products in the Nordic context

The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) recommended in 2007 that consumer intake of red meat is minimized and processed meat eliminated. The recommendation was based on a systematic review of the available literature on the association between meat consumption and cancer. The recommendation to individuals was to ingest less than 500 grams of red meat per weeks, and very little - if anything - processed meats. In a new study, National Food Institute has assessed the nutritional consequences from living the recommendations of the WCRF, in Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark. The current consumption of meat in the Nordic countries is not far from the level WCRF has proposed on an individual level. The study also shows that it will have no significant nutritional consequences to reduce the intake of meat to the recommended, neither when it comes to red meat nor processed meat.

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Summary

Based on a systematic review of the available literature and in particular with reference to the evidence on the association between colorectal cancer and meat consumption, The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) recommended in 2007 that the dietary intake on red meat should be limited and processed meat avoided. The personal recommendation to individuals consuming meat was to consume less than 500 g red meat per week (equivalent to 70 g/d) with very little – if any – processed meat. The specific public health goal was an average consumption of red meat to be no more than 300 g of red meat per week (equivalent to 43 g/d) and very little – if any processed meat.

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