Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
31 Mar

Meat Musings: Are Cold Cuts Primal?

I’m going to say it outright: I’m not a fan of what most people mean when they say “cold cuts.” The water-laden, gummy, super salty, uniformly shaped, barely recognizable sheets of condensed animal parts just don’t whet my appetite. Yeah, it’s technically meat, but it’s really pushing it. That’s the cheap stuff, though. Those are the cold cuts that come pre-wrapped in the refrigerated section next to the American cheese sliced singles. They run a couple bucks for maybe half a pound but a quarter of it is water. Think bologna, cheap ham, slimy chicken, shiny turkey. I’ll pass, thank you.

But are all cold cuts created equal? I often get the question of whether deli meats are healthy Primal fare. Let’s take a closer look.

Beyond the pale pink, mass-marketed luncheon meats there are better options, the acquisition of which involves approaching a counter, taking a number, placing an order, and leaving with a brown paper package of sliced meat. This type of cold cut, generally derived from turkey, cow, or pig (rather than from some mythical hen sporting a breast gargantuan enough to produce cold cuts spanning a full twelve inches), is obviously real meat. It has striations and streaks of fat (depending on the cut), and you can see the grain. These cuts are usually cooked. Think pastrami, roasted turkey, roast beef, and real ham (although good Spanish hams, like Iberico, are traditionally dry cured and never cooked). This is quality stuff, albeit a bit expensive for what you get. It’ll do in a pinch and it’s a better choice.

Then you’ve got your traditionally cured meats – salame, pepperoni, prosciutto, etc – which can also be (and typically are) eaten cold. Let’s call them cold cuts, too, then. Some of these guys actually share characteristics with the cheap cold cuts. Like bologna, many popular cured artisanal meats are made of bits and pieces of the animals (offal, trimmings, fatback, even the face) in order to wring every last edible drop out of an animal (an honorable goal). It began as necessity, but it’s developed into a culinary art form. The similarities end there, though. Good salami and friends are cured, fermented, and dried for months or even years, rarely if ever seeing heat above 100 degrees F; mass market bologna is subjected to intensive thermal treatment. Cured meats get their flavor from basic seasonings and the inimitable hand of fermenting lactic bacteria, while lunch meat producers employ the blunt force trauma of powerful, secret seasoning blends and perhaps a bit of corn syrup.

So – what’s the verdict? Are they in or out of a Primal Blueprint diet?

Some say cold cuts are an abomination, a testament to man’s ability to ruin a good thing by submitting to the all-powerful god of convenience. I can understand that. I mean, have you looked at a slice of bologna before? Like, really looked closely? It’s pretty frightening. Poke it and watch it jiggle, like when Homer got a checkup.

Of course, blanket condemnations are dangerous. You might get it right, but if you get it wrong you could be missing out on something delicious. Cold cut varieties number in the thousands, if you include all cured meats eaten at room temperature or colder. So, while you might hear “cold cuts,” think Oscar Mayer, and gag a little, you could just as accurately imagine artisanal proscuitto, salame, or mortadella.

That said, no matter how hairy the forearms, bristling the mustache, and thick the accent of the artisan doing the curing, I don’t recommend making cured meat the lion’s share of your meat intake. Enjoy charcuterie with quality cheese, take a salame along as trail food and slice big chunks off with a bowie knife and chew with your mouth open (there’s no one around), blanket your meatza with thinly sliced pepperoni, saute some good diced ham with eggs, onions, and aged cheddar, let a thin slice of Iberico ham melt on your tongue, but don’t let that stuff replace (or even significantly displace) steak, roasts, chops, or ribs in your diet. For me, cold cuts and cured meats just aren’t the same as a juicy steak. If you’re not convinced, do a few weeks of heavy, near-exclusive cured meat intake – an n=1 experiment. Take a cue from Robb Wolf, and see how you “look, feel, and perform.” I did exactly that – I spent almost a week eating way more cold cuts than fresh meat.

This wasn’t something I set out to do, but it just so happened that we had a ton of really high quality Italian style cold cuts from Applegate Farms and a local supplier left over from a get together that fell through. It was a wide assortment of salami, pepperoni, soppressata, coppa, and a few others. I tried everything. I made omelets, threw soppressata into salads, gnawed on hunks of dried meat. But I felt bad. Not terrible, just not good. What’s interesting is that Applegate Farms is one of the good ones. They feed grass to cows and “respect the land,” and they seem to use traditional methods; the salami and pepperoni were definitely fermented and slow dried, rather than cooked.

A good rule of thumb is “fresh is best.” If you’re going to eat processed food (like a good cured meat), keep it infrequent, pick stuff that’s been processed according to artisanal or traditional standards, or do the processing yourself. And don’t use it as a daily major source of calories. For one, it’s expensive. If you’re tempted by the affordability of Oscar Mayer and company, consider that conventional ground beef, liver, and other “throwaway” cuts are far cheaper – and they’re actually fresh, real, and free of inflated water volume. Secondly, you’ll be eating massive amounts of sodium, which can complicate hypertension in salt-sensitive individuals and lead to excessive water retention. (I’ve no problem with salt; I just like adding it myself to my food for flavor and texture rather than have it injected directly into the food for me. I don’t need every single inch of my meat to be brimming with briny flavor).

My general recommendations are to:

  • Stick to the quality stuff, with ingredients you recognize.
  • Eat moderate amounts. Use it as a garnish, trail food, with cheese (if you do dairy), or as a topping on other dishes.
  • Buy from trusted suppliers if it’s cured and in sausage form; if it’s straight up turkey breast or roast beef, make sure it comes from a single slab of real animal.

What are your favorite cold cuts? Do they make the, ahem, cut?

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. dices & slices of salami, summer sausage, prosciutto, etc with bits of veggies, olives, various pickled things is a marvelous appetizer tray to kick off a dinner party!
    or to hog all to yourself in a primal ploughman’s plate

    Peggy wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • For sure. If one is at a party and cold cuts are the best option then one “should” dig in if he or she is hungry and cant stop thinking about food.

      Cold cuts are not ideal but depending on your situation they can be the most ideal food present.

      Don’t buy them yourself unless you are set to travel and need a convenience food. Buy Applegate farms or a similar brand if you do and eat as little as you can.

      Don’t forget about the 80/20 rule but enjoy your steak first!

      Primal Toad wrote on March 31st, 2011
      • Yes, I agree! We should not be consuming loads of cold cuts.

        Applegate is an amazing brand when lunch meat is a needed or simply a fall back plan.

        Lindsey wrote on April 1st, 2011
      • We couldn’t agree more; we always say “Eat Less, Better Meat”!

        Applegate wrote on April 4th, 2011
      • It’s hard to find, but there are still some small delis that actually roast their own turkey/ham and roast beef and will slice it for you. For anyone near Pittsburgh…Patsy’s in Verona is great. In Richmond, VA, the European Market does the same thing.

        Darlene wrote on April 7th, 2011
  2. I got a Chef’s Choice 610 model “deli slicer” for christmas. They’re about $99.

    I’ve oven roasted whole turkey breasts, chuck and round roasts and small hams.

    They slice up nicely in no time. If you do large quantities once a week or so, you can have the convenience of “deli meat” or “cold cuts”.

    The Round roast I sliced had very little flavor, and I was disappointed. So I started eating it laid out on a plate like carpaccio and sprinkled with salt, pepper, onion powder and hot sauce. It was absolutely delicious that way.

    The slicer breaks down into machine washable components, so there’s really very little effort involved. You get convenience and “real meat”.

    Chris Thompson wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • HAHA! What are you, Kramer? That’s great!

      John wrote on March 31st, 2011
  3. When convenience overcomes the ability to eat true primal I found that Maple Leaf Natural Selections Sliced Chicken and others are a great substitute. No preservatives only natural ingredients, call it a 20 of the 80/20. This is in Canada not sure whats available in the USA, but it works for me :)

    Jerm wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • My grocery store in Washington used to carry Maple Leaf Natural Ham. It was the only ham with NO nitrates and was cheaper than the other nitrate loaded ham. Then it went away. Not sure if it was a marketing or customs thing. I sure do miss it.

      Ellen wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • You should double check maple leaf naturals as recently MSG under a natural sounding name has been discovered “CBC”
      exposed them …..(:~)

      Richard Freeman.....Greenwood , B.C. wrote on April 16th, 2012
  4. This is why I spent a measly $99 and bought a quality meat slicer off When I want lunchmeat now, I just buy a hunk of meat, season it, roast it, let it sit in the fridge overnight and slice it up the next day. It tastes better, it’s a lot cheaper, there’s only as much salt as I put on it and it’s actually HEALTHY! YES! I recommend everyone on this website buy a meat slicer. And a meat grinder, which will be my next investment.

    ChocoTaco369 wrote on March 31st, 2011
  5. Simpsons reference FTW!

    Zac wrote on March 31st, 2011
  6. Thank you for this!

    I was really depressed when I read cold cuts were out. Now I have some guidance and don’t feel I have to miss out completely on my favorite quality (and rather expensive) ham.

    I have, however, felt better since I switched ham for bacon so agree with the ‘try it and see how you feel’ maxim.

    Alison Golden wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • I’ve just switched the other way good Germany ham for bacon – wanting leaner protein and bacon, as wonderful as it is, comes with something of a hefty fat expense account!

      Kelda wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Cold cut depression is sweeping the nation…

      Annie wrote on April 1st, 2011
  7. I quit eating cold cuts after I was unable to locate any at the grocery store without HFCS. Why do manufacturers use HFCS in meat, anyway? Is there some gawdawful taste that they have to cover up?

    Elimination of cold cuts and sliced bread are two things that have made my life slightly inconvenient, but I don’t plan to go back.

    On a related topic, I just endured a half-hour lecture from a doctor about the fact that I need to lose 90 lbs. Personally, I don’t think I have that much that I need to lose, but I could certainly lose 60. I am down by over 100 lbs from my peak weight in 1999, but I should have lost 160. Time to get serious about losing the rest — I’m trying out IF (today is a fast day).

    Howard wrote on March 31st, 2011
  8. Are meat slicers huge? We’ve got a small-ish kitchen.

    There’s a seemingly higher quality deli meat my husband and I buy occasionally which is nitrite and nitrate free.

    I’m not sure what nitrites and nitrates are, but a nutrition professor years ago said to avoid them if possible, so we usually try to.

    Although, come to think of it, the turkey pepperoni and Canadian bacon we use for low carb pizzas are full of crap, I’m sure.

    Danielle wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Not “Huge” like the ones you’d see in a grocery store deli department. The one I have, “Chef’s Choice 610” is maybe the size of two toasters? It’s listed as being 15″L x 10.5″W x 10.8″H.

      Fear about nitrates is mostly Conventional Wisdom run rampant. Nitrate free bacon or salami (anything cured) is like dairy free milk, it may taste vaguely right, but it’s not real. The act of curing meat requires nitrates, period, otherwise botulism will have you writing to the deli to complain about how dead you are.

      Chris wrote on April 1st, 2011
      • Ha! That’s hilarious… and kind of sad that I’ve been blindly following CW.

        Thanks for the info! Maybe I’ll ask for a meat slicer for my birthday.

        Danielle wrote on April 7th, 2011
  9. Howard, as a matter of fact, there is a gawdawful taste in most processed meats they’re trying to cover up, specifically, in most hotdogs, bologne. Most manufacturers chemically-treat their meats to kill unwanted bacteria, but that obviously leaves a nasty after-taste.

    chocolatechip69 wrote on March 31st, 2011
  10. Junkfood Science: Does banning hotdogs and bacon make sense?

    Darin wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Interesting quote from the article:

      “What may be more surprising to learn is that scientific evidence has been building for years that nitrates are actually good for us, that nitrite is produced by our own body in greater amounts than is eaten in food, and that it has a number of essential biological functions, including in healthy immune and cardiovascular systems. Nitrite is appearing so beneficial, it’s even being studied as potential treatments for health problems such as high blood pressure, heart attacks, sickle cell disease and circulatory problems.”

      Darin wrote on March 31st, 2011
      • Interesting…What I get out of that is, if our body produces so much nitrite, why do we need to eat it?? Too many other questionable ingrredients in these ‘foods’ to take a risk, I think…

        Another thought: These researchers that are telling us now that these ingredients may be helpful…are they the same ones that tell us not to eat eggs, red meat, fats??? Just wondering…

        Ricki wrote on March 31st, 2011
        • Nitrites and nitrates are a *requirement* for making cured meats, otherwise you risk botulism, one of the deadliest food-borne toxins. Next time you see something that is “nitrite and nitrate free*” check the small print: “*except those naturally occurring in {celery salt, sea salt}”. Nitr*tes are toxic in sufficient quantities (doesn’t take much either), so I prefer the controlled application of purified potassium nitrite, which allows producers to use enough to inhibit botulism, but not too much to cause adverse health effects. When you use alternatives you’re still using the same chemicals with the same toxicology, but you don’t really know how much so you might undershoot or overshoot.

          Andrea Reina wrote on March 31st, 2011
        • There are more nitrates in leafy greens than in most processed meat products.

          The evidence for negative health consequences has never been very strong.

          There are plenty of other reasons to avoid overly processed meats, so it’s not a bad idea to go for superior quality. It’s just that those high quality cold cuts still have nitrates in them.

          (Oh, and HFCS is probably used because sugar is a preservative and it tastes good. Personally, I don’t care for the sweet component in lunch meats and try to avoid it because I don’t like the flavor, but sugar is a common component for brining and preserving, even when done by a home cook.)

          Newt wrote on April 1st, 2011
    • It’s the heating of the nitrates without the presence of the other natural anti-oxidants present, like beets, arugula, etc have in them that converts the nitrates to a undesirable chemical.

      Mark covers this in his #1 primal list published September 12, 2012.

      While I do visit Junk Food Science, it seems to me the author no longer updates the site due to poor health.

      Kenny wrote on September 28th, 2012
  11. Great Post Mark!

    Yah I totally agree with you. I can actually tell by the taste if the coldcuts are highly processed and packed with nitrates. But your right some coldcuts are fresh and taste good.

    I prefer to stick with real meat though.

    Greg O’Gallagher

    Kinobody wrote on March 31st, 2011
  12. I can only eat so many cold cuts regardless of source. The salt makes me too thirsty and the fatty coating it leaves on the roof of my mouth gets a bit excessive. But I do love me some good salami, country ham, and pepperoni.

    CJ wrote on March 31st, 2011
  13. I eat them, but I will only purchase stuff like Applegate Farms that doesn’t have nitrates in it. If I do buy something that has nitrates, I make sure to eat some fresh, raw veggies or fruit along with it. I would not say my intake of cold cuts is terribly high, but I do rely on them from time to time for lunches.

    TCM wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • You’re probably getting more nitrates from the “fresh, raw” produce than you are from the meat. See the Junk Food Science link above.

      Ellen wrote on April 6th, 2011
  14. I don’t like the taste of deli-style meats in general. If I want cold meat (and I do), I eat leftover steak cold from the fridge. I love me some cold steak.

    Uncephalized wrote on March 31st, 2011
  15. This week I made the recipe for Deli-style Roast Beef with a venison roast. It was the best “Roast Beef” i’ve ever had. Just bought a grass fed Sirloin tip roast to try it out on again. It’s in the Primal Blueprint Cookbook. LOVE both cookbooks (I have the kindle versions)!!! Thanks Mark!

    Nik wrote on March 31st, 2011
  16. I’m very wary of processed meat, though I grew up getting it just about every day in my school lunches that my mom made. Recently I was in a grocery store and picked up a plastic-sealed chunk of mashed liver. I looked at the ingredients out of interest. I expected the preservative to be last. It was second last, followed by peppercorns. There were a lot of peppercorns. The whole slab of “meat” was about the size of two 10oz steaks and I think if all the peppercorns were put together they’d be about as big as a standard pink eraser. I wonder just how much preservative must have been in there… no doubt a disgusting, toxic amount.

    Tim wrote on March 31st, 2011
  17. I am not a big cold cut fan…. can’t stand hot dogs or bologna… the exceptions are spicy salami, prosciutto or pepperoni from the deli every once in awhile, wrapped around a hunk of cheese with a pickle or olive on top… soooo saltyyyyy mmmmmm.

    Mary wrote on March 31st, 2011
  18. I make a distinction between roast deli-sliced meats and cold cuts. Roast deli-sliced meats are usually just that- a hunk of meat (such as turkey breast) that has been cooked and sliced thinly. Cold cuts, on the other hand, are mashups of meats combined with seasonings- like a sausage.

    I like both roast deli-sliced meats and cold cuts. Roast deli-sliced meats are a go-to for me as a snack, as long as they don’t contain sugar or other bizarre flavorings (many do).

    For cold cuts, I really enjoy a good slice of mortadella here and there or the somewhat strange German cold cuts that remind me of my childhood, but it’s usually too rich and salty for me to eat regularly and in large quantities.

    CNM wrote on March 31st, 2011
  19. -The man is brilliant. Fresh is best. Real is the deal. great post!

    Jesselyn wrote on March 31st, 2011
  20. I love salami, pepperoni, proscuitto, etc… the list goes on and on, but you’re right, it is a meant that you can feel clogging your arteries as you are digesting it. Keeping it to a minimum is absolutely the best idea.

    Jeanna wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Um, meat clogs your arteries? Absolutely not. Welcome to MDA – take off your coat, stay a while.

      Maria wrote on March 31st, 2011
  21. Liverwurst from one of the better makers, spread inside celery sticks. Great way to get my daily allowance of liver and pork fat.

    A.West wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Celery sticks? Wow! What a great idea! Thanks.

      Mary wrote on April 1st, 2011
    • Yeah, liverwurst is one I won’t give up – it’s the only way I find liver palatable.

      But also ham… though more likely to cook a half ham and slice myself than do deli ham.

      And the occasional GOOD roast beef, really rare and sliced thin… yum.

      jpatti wrote on July 26th, 2011
  22. I buy boneless turkey breasts and brine and smoke them myself. I use a spicy rub and apple wood.

    Or I low and slow a sirloin tip for roast beef slices

    Sil wrote on March 31st, 2011
  23. The convenience of having some quick protein to pop in your mouth around lunch time is mighty enticing. Love the idea of making your own “cold cuts” from roasted turkey, beef, etc. Great excuse for roasting up a turkey more often! I have found it challenging to have quality, portable protein snacks to take with me for the day. At some point I know that I will just need to make my own jerky too.

    Dr Kfm wrote on March 31st, 2011
  24. I used to eat so many cold cuts, always from a good quality deli shop, but I’m glad I lost that habit…what I do love and no unknowns there, is leftover (cold) meat mixed in with a salad or just as is…always my favorite part of big holidays…leftover meat to eat cold or with loads of other leftovers…

    …mmm, hungry now

    Love, Jules

    Jules wrote on March 31st, 2011
  25. A question about Applegate Farms…
    I bought some of their Organic Hot Dogs because… I wanted hot dogs. It says they are grass-fed beef… does that mean the same thing as 100% grass fed / grass finished?

    I mean, I know they are still Hot Dogs when it comes down to it, but… they’re a bit better right?

    shz wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Grass-fed doesn’t mean grass-finished.
      The law allowes the feedlots to market meats (that were from a grass-feeding farmer and then fattened up the last 150 days on grains) as grass-fed.

      I know so because I E-mailed a buffalo farmer who’s meats are sold in Fred Meyer. He sells the buffalos to feedlots that fatten them up for 3 months on grains before slaughtered. Truly very sad…

      The farmers company name is on the package that is sold in Fred Meyer, even though he has nothing to do with the quality of meat being sold in the store.
      If I was a grass-farmer I would go through great length to insure my animals don’t end up in feedlots and get abused for 150 days, when I took so much pride and effort raising them.

      Suvetar wrote on March 31st, 2011
      • Applegate hot dogs are grass fed and finished, conveniently.

        You’re right though, it’s a distinction to watch out for.

        Jenny wrote on April 1st, 2011
    • I just checked Applegate Farms’ website, and if you got “The Great Organic Hot Dog” then your dogs are claimed to be grass-fed and grass finished.

      Teddy wrote on March 31st, 2011
  26. Supposedly phenylethylamine, found in chocolate, is a “feel-good” substance; there’s much more of it in salami than in chocolate. So salami can be a good choice if you’ve eliminated or cut down on chocolate and want to brighten your mood a bit.

    I only eat naturally cured salami with no nitrites. A little goes a long way and I really like having it on hand for times when I don’t feel like cooking a big meal. Last night had some salami and farmstead cheese for a light supper. very satisfying.

    There are some really good small producers of natural/artisan salami and if you order online not more expensive than the storebought stuff. Actually economical to buy whole salamis instead of presliced in packages.

    (I used to always take some good salami on long trips in days when I traveled more, so it kind of brings me back to those adventures too!)

    Izzie wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Maybe this is why I eat a whole package of salami in one sitting! Seriously, I can’t buy it anymore because I just can’t stop eating it once I start.

      Leah wrote on March 31st, 2011
  27. I’ve only bought deli meats twice in the last several years. And it was Boreshead Boershead?). Don’t know how that stacks up with Applegate; I buy A’s bacon. :)

    Pogonia wrote on March 31st, 2011
  28. Cold cuts are not primal.

    Cut a slice off your refrigerated, left over whole turkey from the day before…those cold cuts are primal.

    Suvetar wrote on March 31st, 2011
  29. I make an easy version of South African Biltong: Cut 1″ square strips along the grain from cheap inside round roast. Air dry at or below room temperature for three days; I use a small fan to create some “wind”. Use a small amount of sea salt for flavor. Cut into 1/2″ thick chunks for consumption. Almost addictive.

    Thomas W wrote on March 31st, 2011
    • Do you put the sea salt on before or after drying? Can this be dried while in the fridge? I’d love to try this but I don’t want to screw it up! 😉

      Tiffany Carlton wrote on April 7th, 2011
  30. When I have salami or prosciutto, all of my ethnic bells (if not my primal ones) start to ring in harmony. I try to buy the best $tuff I can find, some provolone cheese, and enjoy it with a glass of nice chianti. Bellissimo!

    Mercuria wrote on March 31st, 2011
  31. “I don’t need every single inch of my meat to be brimming with briny flavor”


    JohnC wrote on March 31st, 2011
  32. Great post! We’ve stopped eating cold cuts almost entirely because they just don’t taste good anymore and the nitrite free ones are so expensive!
    As a shameless plug, tomorrow is the last day to enter to win signed copies of The Primal Blueprint and Cookbook at

    Katie @ Wellness Mama wrote on March 31st, 2011
  33. I like venison summer sausage (from deer we hunt ourselves). The locker puts a bit of pork in to hold things together, and sometimes some cheese chunks. I enjoy it in moderation – YUM!

    Dawn wrote on March 31st, 2011
  34. My grocer sells their own oven baked turkey breast or smoked turkey breast that is nitrate free and is very delicious. My “fast” breakfast now is a plate of slightly steamed spinach (microwaved for 20 seconds) topped with slightly grilled turkey slices and topped off with 2 poached eggs. If I have enough time, I’ll add some fruit to the plate.

    Ellen wrote on March 31st, 2011
  35. I shop at the local co-op and everything is a combination of local, organic, preservative free and the labels don’t read like a science experiment gone horribly wrong.

    They have a few wrapped hams, pre-cooked sausages and packaged bacon, but most of the food is fresh cut/ground from recognizable animal parts.

    Morghan wrote on March 31st, 2011
  36. I love beeler’s nitrate free ham. We get it sliced thick and use it for lunches. I pack my daughter’s lunch everyday for school and she gets ham once or twice a week. Our toddler loves it with mustard.

    Sara wrote on March 31st, 2011
  37. Be careful about eating the ones that come in pre-sliced packages.
    As they are sprayed with some kind of virus spray to kill bacteria.

    Larry wrote on March 31st, 2011
  38. As far as I know, the problem with cured meats is that many of them are sugar cured which means that in the cooking process you are going to produce even more AGEs than you usually would as protein reacts with the carbohydrate (sugar) at high heat. Additionally, there are the nitrates/nitrites which are necessary to prevent botulism yet produce nitrosamines when they react with the protein during cooking. All those studies that show high red meat intake are linked to colon cancer usually mean that high processed meat intake is linked to colon cancer and my guess is because of the nitrosamines and glycation/fructation reactions that will occur more often with them. There is also a similar problem with meats that have been smoked as well. Fresh is always best if available!

    Joe wrote on March 31st, 2011
  39. I like my ‘meaty’ taste to come from meat, not some soybeans boiled in acid. ‘Hydrolyzed vegetable protein’, you’re not fooling me (same goes for wheat-derived yeast extracts). Oh, and all the starches holding the almost-meat together.

    Josh wrote on March 31st, 2011

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