A while back, this posting regarding Dr Oz and a guest he had on in which she pointed out that eating cured smoked meats with nitrites and nitrates which change to nitrosomines can lead to atrophy of the brain and alzheimer's disease.
However, when I went looking for documentation regarding ageing and telomeres, I ran across another researcher that lays out a rather confounding situation... good nitrates on the one hand and bad nitrates on the other. What is a bacon eater to do?
Every great once in a while mainline medical advice reverses itself about something important – what was bad becomes good or what was good becomes bad. That happened with Vitamin D in recent years when stern warnings never to exceed 400IU a day gave way to recommendations that it is good for older people to take anywhere up to 4,000IU per day. A reversal may now be taking place having to do with whether nitrates and nitrites lead to cancers and Alzheimer’s Disease and are therefore bad for you, or whether they have great cardiovascular effects and are therefore good for you. There is controversy about this, clashing and clanging of gears as contradictory health advice is commonly given.
The issue at hand is whether it is good or bad for your health to consume foods containing high amount of nitrates and nitrites, foods like processed meats and certain supplements like beet root juice. The controversy extends to whether the large quantities of nitrates used in mass-scale agriculture constitutes a public health hazard because of contamination of public water supplies with nitrates. Is this good or bad for public health? This Part 1 blog entry presents the research case against consumption of nitrites and nitrites. A following Part 2 blog entry presents the research case in favor of consumption of nitrites and nitrites. I added some additional citations here on January 10, 2010.
Part 1 The Bad Side
Part 2 The Good Side
What do you think? Will you continue to eat supermarket bacon drenched in sodium nitrates or will you stop and go search for uncured bacon and other meats? Or will you continue to eat the supermarket bacon because of the benefical effects of the nitrites and nitrates?