Philadelphia Flyers Mascot Should Drop the Hot Dogs to Fight Cancer

Posted on by Neal Barnard, MD, FACC

hot-dogsProfessional sports have some influence over the American public. The Philadelphia Flyers just introduced Gritty, the hockey team’s new hot-dog-loving mascot. Well, I have some news for Gritty: hot dogs don’t love you back. So skip Flyers Dollar Dog Night to protect yourself from colorectal cancer. Hockey is no place for hot dogs. The World Health Organization says hot dogs and other processed meat – like pepperoni, bacon and deli meat – are “carcinogenic to humans” and major contributors to colorectal cancer. In fact, eating just one hot dog a day can increase cancer risk by 18%. The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) and the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) agree and say that “the evidence on processed meat and cancer is clear-cut.” Gritty’s hot dog habit also sends a dangerous message to his younger fans, who are at greater risk of colorectal cancer than earlier generations. The American Cancer Society says that high consumption of processed meat and low consumption of fruits, vegetables and other dietary fiber are contributing risk factors. So let’s encourage Gritty and his fans to stick it to colorectal cancer by dropping the hot dogs. Photo from here, with thanks.