Well, I’m willing to believe

Hotdogs and other cured meat such as salami and beef jerky may be causing manic episodes, according to a new study.

Scientists say they suspect the chemical preservative nitrate is causing the disorders.

They found people hospitalised for an episode had more than three times the odds of having ever eaten nitrate-cured meats than people without a history of a serious psychiatric condition.

The study was backed up a further experiment in rats who were fed a diet with added nitrates and had mania-like hyperactivity after just a few weeks.

Well, I would be, if they then fed people leafy veg (spinach, arugula) and then found the same effect.

But the larger idea, that there might be harmful effects? Sure, why not? For as with so many things we’ not be surprised to find more than one thing going on.

Those who, historically, ate such cured meats would not be deaded through starvation. The minor effect of mania would be swamped by that carrying on living thing.

26 thoughts on “Well, I’m willing to believe”

  1. What the what?

    “They found people hospitalised for an episode had more than three times the odds of having ever eaten nitrate-cured meats than people without a history of a serious psychiatric condition.”

    What proportion of the adult population has NEVER eaten nitrate cured meats?

    Actually, come again, what does the sentence I quoted even mean?

  2. Must be why London’s Jewish community have such a reputation for going ape-shit & rampaging around Whitechapel & Golders Green. Never realised what a risk I was taking with those Friday evening salt-beefs on rye from the beigel shop in Brick Lane.

  3. More cockrot.

    Akin to the “Coke is bad for you” capers where they were giving rats the equivalent of 30 tins of Coke a day and claiming all sorts of unsurprisingly bad effects on the creatures health as a result.

    Again the banstubators also need an urgent Purge starting with defunding.

  4. We’ll that explain why the Dutch, Germans,Italians,French. oh what the hell..the whole of Europe for being maniacs

  5. So Much For Subtlety

    Poor people are more likely to eat hot dogs. The mentally ill are more likely to be poor – and less likely to be organised enough to cook food from scratch leading to a heavier reliance on pre-cooked, semi-cooked and take-away food.

    Cause and effect is a b!tch ain’t it?

  6. Agree wholeheartedly with the ‘preserved food helps against starvation’ argument, and the forces against are those who want to impress a no-pork diet on us, as much of the preserved meat comes from the pig.

    Incidentally, if you don’t want to starve, which is better: an animal that regularly produces 6 to 8 offspring several times a year, which grow like wildfire because they eat just about anything (and taste delicious) or something that produces only one, only once a year, and which grows slowly because it only eats grass?

    OK, the sheep may be ‘food with benefits’ for the Welsh, and the goat ditto in the Middle East, and occasionally there are two offspring, but there has to be a reason why we don’t cultivate elephants (lotsa meat on that, caveman) because they gestate for about 3 years!

  7. It’s been a wonderful few days for diet obsessives who read the Tel. Full fat milk protects you from stoke, the aforesaid hot dogs make you mad, omega-3 supplements do your heart no good, and eating fried bats extends your life.

  8. Times have changed. Curing now is usually with high powered synthetic chemicals which are turning up in all sorts of foods as well as other products. Before this era began curing relied on a limited range of natural substances which had to be dealt with carefully to avoid failure of the cure.

  9. I realised about thousand years ago that any newspaper story that says ‘Food X is good for you’ or ‘Food Y is bad for you’ is bollocks. Even most of the original research will be a pile of poorly-designed garbage.

    At the moment the current targets are sugar and processed meat. Lots of third-rate ‘scientists’ are able to get funding at the moment to ‘prove’ that they’re bad.

  10. HDVN,

    Have you always known that, or did it slowly dawn on you – like it did to me? Traditional foods are unlikely to have bad effects if eaten as part of a balanced diet, or we would see all our relatives sickening and dying at a young age. In other words, if there is a bad effect, it has to be very subtle.

    The same thing goes for medicines. Take the really strong chemical that cures you of an immediate problem and then stop, or regularly use something rather weak (Like the odd aspirin etc), but beware of long term use of something strong, just because the quack tells you to. Many of those things don’t come backed with long term studies and experience.

  11. ‘They found people hospitalised for an episode had more than three times the odds of having ever eaten nitrate-cured meats than people without a history of a serious psychiatric condition.’

    It proves maniacal people eat more hotdogs, salami… maybe they have a mania for these things.

    Note the absence of a blind, randomised study and control group.

  12. “They found people hospitalised for an episode had more than three times the odds of having ever eaten nitrate-cured meats than people without a history of a serious psychiatric condition.”

    Surely they meant to say ‘more than 3 times the likelihood of’, as odds 3 times higher would imply it is 1/3 as likely?

  13. I’m surprised the study didn’t conclude with “and if you buy kippers in a Tuesday it will not rain”

  14. Weasel Word Alert: when you read “scientists say that X may cause Y” then silently say to yourself “or may not.”

  15. I find it most amusing that the whole article does not even mention ‘The Doner Kebab’. The push by the EU to ban nitrate cured meats is targeted at Doner meat, but of course mentioning that is ‘Slamophobic’ innit? However, I wonder whether all those suicide bombers grew up on a diet of nitrate cured meat?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *