First, I’d like to point out that bacon is not implicated specifically, it’s “processed meat” in general. Second, the study relied on questionnaires, which are notoriously unreliable.
The team analyzed sperm samples of 156 volunteers and compared them to each participant’s food intake, as reported on a food intake questionnaire… the team found a negative association between processed meat — including hamburgers, hot dogs and bacon — and sperm quality.
I am here to tell you that in most cases, hot dogs, hamburgers, and bacon are not health foods. Groundbreaking, I know.
Beef can be an extremely healthy food, but when you consume it in the form of a McDonald’s hamburger, it’s not healthy.That’s poor quality beef, wrapped in poor quality cheese and a hamburger bun, often served with fries and a soda. Men who eat a lot of hamburgers are almost always also eating a lot of other garbage with those hamburgers.
See the difference between these two meals? Beef can be very healthy, but many common unhealthy lifestyles include beef.
I’ll make no attempts to defend hot dogs. Don’t eat hot dogs.
Bacon is a little more nebulous. Here’s the deal:
- Bacon is not health food. Don’t pretend it is.
- The biggest issues with bacon are high PUFA content and potential toxins (source is important).
- Bacon is not poisonous. Eating it in reasonable amounts (especially if it’s responsibly sourced) will not cause you problems.
- A pound a day is bad. A pound a week is ok. A pound a month is better.
- Bacon is better for you than a bagel. Then again, lots of stuff is better for you than a bagel.
So go ahead and eat bacon once in a while when you’re really craving it, or if it comes paired with something awesome. Think of bacon as a condiment, or a delicacy.
Most of the time: eat well-sourced beef, fish, eggs, vegetables, and fruit. There’s a recipe for awesome sperm.