Why is bacon bad for you?

Why is bacon bad for you?

I am not the biggest fan of bacon, but my brothers and husband really love it.  I will admit I have tried the candied bacon at Honky Tonk (served on a beer no less) and Vosage Mo’s Milk Chocolate Bacon Bar.  It tastes good, I’m just not one of those people that thinks ‘bacon makes everything taste better.’   I am certainly not trying to ruin anyone’s personal love affair with bacon, but I have decided to respond to my husband’s repetitive inquiry, ‘com’on, bacon isn’t that bad for you?’  So I guess in some ways this is a letter to my husband.

Nutritionally speaking, bacon is as bad for you as they say.  But it isn’t because of the calories.  There is actually only about 40 calories in a strip.  And believe it or not it is not because of the fat.  There is about 3.5 grams of fat in one strip.

The problem with bacon is not only that it is high in sodium with a fair amount of saturated fat, but it is filled with nitrates.  Sodium nitrate is a preservative that you should look for on packages.  It is like trans fat.  The trans fat awareness has changed the way a lot of companies process their food and now it is a huge selling point for cereals, crackers, peanut butters and so forth in luring consumers to buy their product.  I wish there was a sodium nitrate movement because it would force people to look more closely at this derivative of nitric acid.  The use of sodium nitrate and its effect on the body is being more closely evaluated.  It has been suggested it has carcinogenic properties.  But aside from this potential, sodium nitrate is actually dangerous when it come in contact with other substances possibly causing a fire, inhaling it can cause problems with your respiratory system and exposure directly to your skin can cause severe irritation.

Now granted, most are not inhaling bacon, rubbing it on their body (although I have heard a few stories) or rubbing it with potential combustibles, but the fact that there is an ingredient in bacon that has these effects freaks me out.  Luckily, many of the organic manufacturers are producing bacon without nitrates.  Here is a list of some of the better options out there.  So, if 40 calories a strip and 3.5 grams of mostly saturated fat doesn’t deter you, then try one of these products on your BLT, with your eggs or covered in dark chocolate.

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    Nitrates used in curing are degraded to nitrite, which is harmless. Your body also converts nitrates to nitrites well, so even eating it on fruits and veggies is fine. There is also no proven link between nitrates and cancer. It *was* suggested there was a link...iiiiin the 1980s, and has since been thoroughly investigated, with the overall conclusion that eating sodium nitrate is fine. Your spit right now contains tons more nitrites than anything you could ever eat.
    Lastly, most "no nitrate added" products use celery juice instead. It's "natural," sure, but it's just a natural way of adding, you guessed it, sodium nitrate. So I'd watch out for "nitrate-free" things, because they often have way *more* "natural" sodium nitrate in them.

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    Sorry to be contradictory, but this article is the first google hit for "why is bacon bad for you" (and for that you have my sincere congratulations :D) and it peeves me when people get sucked into regurgitating inflammatory misinformation.

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    I know: stress is what gets me every time. And healthy diet is such an essential factor for overall health, not only skincare. I would add to the above that it’s important to understand what skincare products are truly important among the noise of advertising and brands pushing their products. I posted a good article on Sulia about this recently. Thanks for reading! syeda

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