Benefits of Pork in Your Diet
IARC: Evaluating the Cancer Risk of Red and Processed Meat
On October 26, 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) published a news release and article in The Lancet Oncology on a recent panel evaluation to understand the cancer risk of red and processed meat.
In the report, processed meat was classified as Group 1, or carcinogenic to humans, and red meat was classified as Group 2A, or probably carcinogenic to humans. The IARC panel committee evaluated the risk this past month in a series of meetings in France. The complete monograph defining the full details of the report and the studies it considered will be published in 2016.
The IARC panel’s conclusion on red and processed meat is not based on solid evidence, as the primary body of evidence used by IARC was based on observational studies that are not able to define a cause-and-effect relationship.
“I care about the health of my family and the health of our consumers. Based on the nutritional science available today, I am confident in the safety of the pork products that come from America’s pig farmers. We encourage all consumers to continue enjoying pork as part of a healthy, balanced diet. ”
NPPC WHO Considers Risk In Classifying Carcinogens.pdf– National Pork Producers Council
Nutrient-Rich Pork: Part of Healthy Eating Patterns
Over the past two decades, America’s pig farmers have worked closely with their swine nutritionists, veterinarians, and swine geneticists to make changes in what pigs eat, how they are raised and bred to develop a leaner, quality pork product that is desired and preferred by our customers.
In the market place today, lean, nutrient-rich pork is versatile, affordable and accessible for many Americans. Pork has many beneficial qualities to make pork easy to incorporate into any healthy and balanced diet.
Source of Key Nutrients: Pork is both a good source of protein and also provides several important vitamins and minerals. A 3-ounce serving of pork is an “excellent” source of thiamin, selenium, protein, niacin, vitamin B6 and phosphorus, and a “good” source of riboflavin, zinc, and potassium.
Lean Protein: Today’s pork is 16% leaner and 27% lower in saturated fat compared to 20 years ago. Seven cuts of pork meet the USDA guidelines for “lean” by containing less than 10 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat and 95 milligrams of cholesterol per 100 grams of meat. Popular pork tenderloin has the same amount of fat as a skinless chicken breast.
Heart-Healthy: Pork is naturally low in sodium and a “good” source of potassium – two nutrients that, when coupled, can help regulate blood pressure. Pork tenderloin is certified as heart-healthy by the American Heart Association with its heart-check mark, indicating that it contains less than 6.5 grams of fat, 1 gram or less of saturated fat (and 15% or less calories from saturated fat) and 480 milligrams or less of sodium per label serving, among other criteria.
Nutrition Research Available
The National Pork Board provides funding for objective, independent research based on pork producer priorities. The Board does not have control over the outcome of the research nor does it have editorial review of research reports, the content of which belongs to the authors.
- Berg, E. (2015). Comparison of red meat versus high carbohydrate diet as a means of preventing tissue-specific down-regulation of insulin receptors
- Campbell, W. (2015). Effects of pork vs. chicken/fish in a DASH diet on blood pressure regulation in older adults with hypertension
- Stettler, N. (2013). Systematic Reviews of Observational and Experimental Human Studies Related to Pork Intake and Type 2 Diabetes, Insulin-Resistance Syndrome or Its Components
- Hollis, J. (2014). The effect of increasing the protein content of breakfasts on satiety and cognitive function in undergraduate students.
- Leidy, H. (2012). The Daily Consumption of a Protein-rich Breakfast for Long-term Improvements In Appetite, Glucose Control, and Body Weight Management in Overweight &Obese ‘Breakfast Skipping’ Adolescents
- Campbell, W. (2012). The effects of protein quantity and source on postprandial satiety and plasma amino acid concentrations
- Campbell, W. (2012). Increased protein intakes from predominantly meat- versus soy protein/pulses-based foods: Effects on daily and postprandial appetite during energy restriction-induced weight loss
- Hollis, J. (2010). Consumer acceptability and stability of omega-3 enriched pork products
- Scott Smith, J. (2010). Assessment of Human Exposure to Heterocyclic Amines (HCAs) from Cooked Meat Products
- Tran, N. (2009). US Pork Consumption and Nutritional Contribution of Pork to the Diet of the US
- Miller, A. (2009). Assessment of the Potential Human Exposure to Heterocyclic Amines from Cooked Meat Products
- Keeton, J. (2009). A National Survey of the Nitrite/Nitrate Concentrations in Cured Meat Products and Non-meat Foods Available at Retail
- Gannon, M. (2009). Effect of a High Protein Diet on 24-hr Profile of Ghrelin, GH and IGF-1
- Gates, G. (2002). Protein Intake in Potentially Insulin Resistant Adults: Impact on Glycemic and Lipoprotein Profiles
Additional Nutrition Research Available
- Alexander, D. D., Miller, A., Cushing, C., & Lowe, K.A. (2010). Processed meat and colorectal cancer: a quantitative review of prospective epidemiologic studies. European Journal of Cancer Prevention.
- Alexander, D. D., Mink, P. J., Cushing, C. A., & Sceurman, B. (2010). A review and meta-analysis of prospective studies of red and processed meat intake and prostate cancer. Nutrition Journal.
- Alexander, D. D., & Cushing, C.A. (2010). Red meat and colorectal cancer: a critical summary of prospective epidemiologic studies. The International Journal of Obesity.
- Hord, N.G., Tang, Y., & Bryan N.S. (2009). Food sources of nitrates and nitrites: the physiologic context for potential health benefits. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Did You Know?
Pork truly is The Other White Meat®! According to an analysis by the US Department of Agriculture, pork tenderloin contains the same amount of fat and slightly less calories than the same serving of skinless chicken breast. What’s more, the same analysis found there are six cuts of pork that are considered either extra lean or lean by labeling standards. Now dieters have more options than ever to make lean, healthy choices when planning meals.
The high-protein diet included 6 ounces, or two servings, of pork every day. It’s easy to reach this goal by including lean cuts of pork like Canadian bacon with your eggs for breakfast, adding grilled or sautéed pork chop strips to your salad at lunch, or roasting pork tenderloin for dinner. Plus, PorkBeInspired.com is packed with recipes for every meal.
To learn more about the nutritional value of pork, please visit www.porkandhealth.org/
 National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 27. Based on 3-ounce cooked servings (roasted), separable lean only.
 National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 27. Based on 3-ounce cooked servings (roasted or broiled), visible fat trimmed after cooking.
 National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 27.