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packed hams / meats

Discussion in 'Low-carb Diet Forum' started by centaur68, Aug 26, 2021.

  1. centaur68

    centaur68 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    hi, apologise if its a stupid question but I'm trying to get back into LCHF having fallen off the wagon a bit & gained fat again.( & restarted depression but that's another story) eating better now & exercising but reading diet doctor & other places all say avoid processed meats but i then see to eat bacon, ham, chicken etc
    question is- do i just get hams etc from deli counter or is the packs of ham/pastrami/chicken in cold aisle ok as well?
    thanks
     
  2. ianf0ster

    ianf0ster Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi @centaur68 This is one of those questions where everybody will have an opinion - even scientists and medics working in related areas have different opinions.

    First to definitions, anything raw is unprocessed, anything just cooked at home (or which could have been cooked at home) is minimally processed.
    Processed is just taking it a step further.
    Ultra-processed is where you need a long list of ingredients and factory processes in order to make it.
    So I say, and what to a certain extent I do when/if unable to buy the top quality meat:
    Choose 'whole', 'real' more traditional meats/foods over processed, but choose processed meats over ultra-processed non-meat foods.

    Because humans have processed food since the discovery of how to make fire ( cooking food is processing it if only a little).
    The main problems for me with studies ( food frequency questionnaires ) is that:
    1. They lump let's say bacon or a high meat content sausage together with 'junk food' that needs a factory to produce it (i.e. you could never make it in a kitchen - even a restaurant kitchen) Then they say red meat is bad for us.
    2. They ask make no distinction between eating minimally processed meat (a medium rare steak for example) and a cheap hot dog of unknown origin.
    3. They are notoriously unreliable because people forget what they ate or respond with what they think would have been good for them to have eaten.

    I hope this helps.
     
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  3. JoKalsbeek

    JoKalsbeek I reversed my Type 2 · Expert

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    Keep in mind that most of those books are from either the USA or Canada, where they don't seem to know what to do with "deli meat". I found the Canadian stuff nothing at all like actual meat, with all the insane additives like corn syrup or whatever. (Not to mention the Wonder Bread it was served with...). Maybe the pseudo-sausages heard of meat once before leaving the factory, but that's about it.

    Right now I have some excellent cold cuts in my fridge which aren't highly processed, just really good quality meats from the butcher counter at my local supermarket. Just keep an eye on the ingredient list and the nutritional info. Usually if you pay a little more it's because it's all good, real meat. (And sometimes I get the cheap stuff, if the ingredient list doesn't make me run for the hills. Ham is usually fine. And no-one can touch my bacon!)
     
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  4. ZoeinKent

    ZoeinKent · Active Member

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    We often use a brand called Finnebrogue who sell the 'Naked' range of bacon, sausages and ham. Their products are produced without the use of nitrites, which I think are the most problematic substance used in processed meat.
     
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  5. NicoleC1971

    NicoleC1971 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Remember that you are trying to keep your blood glucose and insulin levels low so anything like deli meats that helps may be a benefit balanced against the small risk of bowel cancer that I think the advice refers to. If you gain fat and have high blood sugars/insulin levels then this is also linked to a greater risk of breast and colon cancer as well as all the other risks for diabetics (heart disease, kidneys, eyes etc.).
    For example there's a clear causal link between say smoking and lung cancer (meets statistical criteria to infer causation) unlike saturated fat and heart disease which is only indirectly correlated and unproven.
    There's been concern about nitrates in bacon and other cured meats being the cause of the correlation but its not a big signal. You can buy nitrate free bacon and if I can afford it I will buy meats with high pork content (less water, hooves, eyes and whatever bits might go into cheaper versions) but that's because I think they taste nicer.
     
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  6. lucylocket61

    lucylocket61 Type 2 · Expert

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    except boiling bacon, or boiling ham or roasting joint like that. They have been processed.
     
  7. Oldvatr

    Oldvatr Type 2 · Expert

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    One thing we will need to pay attention to in the future is
    a) reconstituted meat made from reassembling the scrapings from the meat cutters. Bernard Mathews was a prime example of this technique.
    b) TVP - soy product made like textured meat and used in Vesta meals and TV dinners.
    c) lab-grown meat. Can now legally be called meat or burger or fillet even if plant-based.
    c) Vat-grown meat made from fungi, such as Quorn and Impossible Burgers.
    d) Zero waste meat (not sure what this is)
    d) Environmentally sound meat ( again, this is a new one on me, but is being produced for supermarkets.

    CNN is airing a documentary this Saturday to discuss these different approaches to making meat 'sustainable and environmentally carbon zero impact. In other words - no animals were harmed in their manufacture.
     
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  8. coby

    coby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    This is an interesting topic.
    Myself .. I never really ate red meat for most of my life apart from occasionally making a Cottage pie on cold winter days.
    Now I eat beef burgers, bacon, and (very rarely) Ham.
    I've always had Chicken, Turkey, Fish. Salmon and Tuna mainly, in the fish range, but do like Haddock.
    I do find that red meat fills me more than white meats, but not sure why.
    I hope I am doing the right thing here, but I think you mainly class 'processed' as ham and bacon?
     
  9. Oldvatr

    Oldvatr Type 2 · Expert

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    I would class the old-fashioned cured ham and bacon as minimally processed, but nowadays these are washed and injected with nitrites or nitrates and other artificial preservatives. Then sprayed with smoke-mixture if 'smoked'. Same with kippers and amoked fish.
     
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  10. coby

    coby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I expect it's better to buy meat straight from the farm then?
    I never eat smoked anything . don't like the sound of it
     
  11. lucylocket61

    lucylocket61 Type 2 · Expert

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    In Wales the farmers dont butcher meat, its done at abattoirs. You cant buy meat straight from a farm, its illegal. Organic nitrate free may be possible from somewhere though?
     
  12. Grant_Vicat

    Grant_Vicat Don't have diabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Until modern methods arrived and before electricity, most people, however poor, would smoke their meat and fish etc to prolong its usable life. This was done over an open fire which was fuelled by logs and never went out. Real smoked meat/fish is extremely different from that stuff in plastic wrappers which claims to be smoked. It's been nowhere near smoke, unless .... Smoked food should be dry. and has a much longer shelf life. It's possible you might appreciate the real thing! Richer people would salt or pickle.
     
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    #12 Grant_Vicat, Aug 26, 2021 at 7:14 PM
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2021
  13. Riva_Roxaban

    Riva_Roxaban Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I have never worried about the health aspect between prepacked or fresh meat, bacon, ham, etc. I buy from both a supermarket and my local butcher.

    I buy supermarket bacon because it's cheaper at $10.00 per kg than the butchers home smoked bacon which is around the $20.00 a kg mark.

    Same for the meat I wait and see what my butchers have on special and then stock up, but I also get prepacked meat.

    Same for small goods from the deli or the butcher which are both prepacked.

    Real smoked bacon from the butchers facebook page, he only smokes it for a day though. it's nothing like the bacon @Grant_Vicat is on about though.

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. coby

    coby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Where I previously lived there were two farms that sold meat.
    One also had a butcher's shop
     
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  15. coby

    coby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Wow that picture takes me right back to my early childhood!
     
  16. Mbaker

    Mbaker Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    This is all messed up because of nutritional epidemiology, in my view not worthy of to be associated with science.

    Processed meats tend to accompany mixed meals like fast foods, microwave type meals or say doner kebab meat. They have been associated (only) by studies such as food frequency questionnaires, which are then interpreted to ensure meat is the problem, ignoring chips cooked in veg oil, breads, pasta etc. The results are always miniscule and never cross the threshold to go on to other more rigorous studies. The numbers are always 1.x, but inflated to look bigger by using relative risk so a 1.8 would be called 18%, when a real signal such as smoking causing cancer is a 10 plus.

    Not saying low quality processed meat is good, but something like iberico ham or artisan Italian salami is not the same as a cheap and cheerful hot dog. The hypocrisy is astonishing as here's the ingredients of a so called healthy burger alterative, if we are talking over processed:

    upload_2021-8-26_21-25-25.png

    As for nitrates, those in vegetables don't get mentioned, only bacon.
     
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  17. lucylocket61

    lucylocket61 Type 2 · Expert

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    Which does not negate my reply. It doesn't come straight from the field to the farm shop. It has to go to the abattoir to be slaughtered and partially cut up, offal separated etc first. Not all of the beast is then returned to the farm
     
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  18. coby

    coby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes of course I see your point there. The one place in a village a mile out of town has it's own abattoir, and they are their own cattle from their farm. They also have a butchers shop in the town where they sell from. I'm not certain how the other place do it, but they are VERY popular.
     
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  19. coby

    coby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I just found this about them x

    We are a family business specialising in locally sourced meat all direct from our own abattoir. Roycroft Farm, Bramshall, UK
     
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  20. ianf0ster

    ianf0ster Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I think you will find that you are mistaken about the nitrites. They have just avoided using the word as an additive.
    They do use nitrites, but use them from celery which naturally has a high concentration of nitrites. This is rather like saying 'no added sugar' and then listing HFCC or Guava juice or Honey etc.

    Personally I don't object to them being cheeky like that. But it made me think id nitrites in processed meat are so bad for us why is celery not given a cancer warning?

    So I ultimately decided that since my bacon consumption is low, I wouldn't pay the extra in order to have nitrites from a disguised source rather than up-front.
     
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    #20 ianf0ster, Aug 26, 2021 at 10:59 PM
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2021
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