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Hot-Dog Eaters, Save Your Buns

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PCRM’s “Hot-Dog Eaters, Save Your Buns” banner at the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July hot dog eating contest warned spectators and participants of the link between hot dogs and colorectal cancer. On July 10, PCRM’s “Warning: Hot Dogs Can Strike You Out—For Good” billboard cautioned fans flocking to the All-Star baseball game.

The All-Star billboard near Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., featured an image of hot dogs jammed into a cigarette pack labeled "Unlucky Strikes.”

Warning: Hot Dogs Can Strike You Out—For Good

“Hot dogs can cause cancer, and like cigarettes they should come with a warning label,” says PCRM chief medical officer Ulka Agarwal, M.D. “Just one hot dog a day increases a person’s colorectal cancer risk by 21 percent. Add to that other processed meats people could be eating daily, like bacon, pepperoni, and sausage, and the health risk multiplies.”

Hot dogs are popular at ballparks. This season fans are expected to chow down on 20.5 million hot dogs as they watch the games, according to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. At Kauffman Stadium 8,000 hot dogs were sold on the day of this year’s opening game alone.

Consuming processed meats increases the risk of colorectal cancer, according to a large number of studies, including the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study. A study from the Harvard School of Public Health says that a daily serving of processed meats, like one hot dog, sausage, or a few bacon strips, increases the risk of premature death by 20 percent.

Learn more about the dangers of processed meats >

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