Monday, June 7, 2010

Estrogen in Chicken and Beef

Japanese researchers presented a poster titled "Does dietary estrogen intake from meat relate to the incidence of hormone-dependent cancers? (1553)" Unfortunately, they did not answer their own question. They did measure estrogen levels in checken and beef from three countries, however, finding high levels of estrogen in USA chicken and beef. They summarized the work as follows, quoting directly from their abstract:

"The high estrogen concentrations in Japanese chicken, USA chicken, and USA beef have been attributed to the residue of external estrogen in the feed given to the livestock. The nearly zero level found in Japanese beef and Brazilian chicken is considered to be natural endogenous amount without estrogen supplementation. The estrogen levels in meat are much lower than those of contraceptive pills (0.035 mg/tab). Even so, when considering lifetime exposure to meat containing higher level of estrogen than human fat tissue, estrogen intake from daily meat consumption cannot be disregarded as a factor governing human health. Consequently, dietary estrogen intake from meat might promote estrogen accumulation in the human body and could be related to the incidence of hormone-dependent cancers."

Hmmm. The researchers did not say how they obtained the USA chicken and beef, but I suspect that it was not from organic sources. I do believe in buying only organic meat, or at least meat that is advertised "no added hormones." It may cost more, but cancer is a real bummer.

Some of the 30,000 people at ASCO: McCormick Center in Chicago

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