According to Professor Chris Elliott at the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s University in Belfast, research has shown that “when people consume bacon cured with nitrites, they could be increasing their risk of contracting cancer.”
Nitrites are used to improve food quality and protect against contamination, but they are also sources of known carcinogens that can cause cancer in living tissue.
We imagine you would have to consume a lot of bacon for this to be a real threat, but there’s good news.
Research from the Belfast university has suggested that green tea polyphenols can be used instead of nitrites to process dry cured bacon.
According to foodwatch, polyphenols are a class of chemical compounds found in plants, and many are powerful antioxidants that can neutralise free radicals, reduce inflammation and slow the growth of tumours. Green tea happens to be made of 30% polyphenols – we knew it was great for more than its delish taste!
It sounds like a fab idea for making our favourite brekky a little healthier, and in the meantime we’ll be in the kitchen brewing some green tea!
Sydney-based Hannah Oakshott is a tea-obsessed pop culture enthusiast who can usually be found showing people pictures of her two miniature schnauzers or baking sweet, lemony food. Hannah is on Instagram @hannah.mareeee