Researchers from the University of Washington School of Medicine surveyed 2,000 Native Americans from Arizona, Oklahoma and North and South Dakota to look into potential reasons for their high risk of developing diabetes. Current statistics show that nearly half will have the condition by age 55.
What they found was that those who ate processed meat in a can, generically known as “spam” most often had a two-fold increased risk of developing diabetes over those who ate little or none, according to a U.S. study. Spam is a common food on reservations because it is subsidized by the government.
Due to the rural locations and interest in maximum shelf life, canned foods, like Spam are common staples. The incidence of diabetes among the Spam consumers was almost double those who ate the least amount. The researchers noted that unprocessed meat did not have the same relationship. Processed meats were tied to a 19 percent higher diabetes risk, while unprocessed meats were neutral.
The researchers found no clear explanation for the link of processed meats and diabetes. However, they did say that that the people who ate the most processed meats tended also to be heavier and have larger waistlines which raises the possibility that processed meats contribute to obesity. Obesity raises the risk of diabetes. It should be noted that studies consistently show a direct relationship between the consumption of processed foods and the risk of obesity, diabetes and other chronic diseases.
Good health is not rocket science. Eliminate all the man-made refined and processed food and build your diet around all the delicious fresh, whole unprocessed foods we are designed and adapted to eat. Your ideal body composition and optimal health will be your reward.
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