The finding of the study was published in the The International Journal of Cancer. According to a report by Sciencedaily.com, the researchers analysed information on the consumption of different types of meat and meat cooking practices from 42,012 women who were observed for an average of seven and a half years.
During follow-up, 1,536 invasive breast cancers were diagnosed, according to the study authors. Increasing consumption of red meat was associated with increased risk of invasive breast cancer as women who consumed the largest quantity of red meat had a 23 per cent higher risk, compared with women who consumed the smallest quantity.
Conversely, increasing consumption of poultry was associated with decreased invasive breast cancer risk as women with the highest consumption had a 15 per cent lower risk than those with the lowest consumption. Breast cancer was reduced even further for women who substituted poultry for meat.
A senior author of the study, Dr Dale Sandler, said,
“Red meat has been identified as a probable carcinogen. Our study adds further evidence that red meat consumption may be associated with increased risk of breast cancer whereas poultry meat was associated with a decreased risk.
“While the mechanism through which poultry consumption decreases breast cancer risk is not clear, our study does provide evidence that substituting poultry for red meat may be a simple change that can help reduce the incidence of breast cancer.”