- Japanese knotweed extract can be used in processed meat to reduce cancer risk
- Natural additives can be used to reduce some of the harmful effects of nitrite
- Using natural additives in processed red meat reduces the creation of compounds in the body that are linked to cancer
A new study found that Japanese knotweed extract when added to processed red meat products can reduce colorectal cancer risk.
Japanese knotweed, the fast-growing plant, feared by homeowners for its ability to invade gardens and buildings, contains a chemical which can take the place of the nitrite preservative in cured meats, such as bacon and sausages.
Diets high in nitrite have been linked to a higher risk of colorectal cancers – leading scientists to look for alternatives.
The PHYTOME project has developed processed red meat that includes added natural substitutes. These natural substitutes reduce the carcinogenic compound nitrite added to preserve meats.
A mixture of plants and fruits added to red meat included rosemary, green tea, and resveratrol – an extract taken from Japanese knotweed.
The findings show that using natural additives in processed red meat reduces the creation of compounds in the body that are linked to cancer.
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