You can get cancer from everything.
April 24, 2002 9:08 AM   Subscribe

You can get cancer from everything. Now even the good old spud carries a warning, discovered by the potatoloving swedes.
posted by dabitch (17 comments total)
Scary. Good thing I don't eat chips or fries.

Unfortunately, however, I do eat peanut butter, which doesn't appear to be much better...
posted by gramcracker at 9:10 AM on April 24, 2002

We're all fucked.... *goes off to eat a hearty Arby's Roast Beef*

mmmm.... processed meat....
posted by hobbes at 9:12 AM on April 24, 2002

The one that made me throw my hands in the air and refuse to worry about it anymore? Working nightshift causes breast cancer.
posted by NsJen at 9:14 AM on April 24, 2002

Both my parents have scolded me for my irregular sleep patterns, which are said to take a toll on the body (even with adequate sleep). At the time, I never listened, but now I'm finding 'em to be wiser and wiser... mystic Eastern ideals. ;)
posted by hobbes at 9:25 AM on April 24, 2002

The research was deemed so important that the scientists decided on the unusual step of going public with their findings before the research had been officially published in an academic journal.

By that, I assume they mean it hasn't even been peer-reviewed yet to see if their methods and conclusions hold water. Not to mention that their results haven't been duplicated. I predict that in 6 months there will be a correction but no one will notice and everyone will run around spewing bad statistics whenever you try to eat a dang potato chip.
posted by stefanie at 9:29 AM on April 24, 2002

Hey, are breakfast cereals heated during production?
posted by NortonDC at 10:19 AM on April 24, 2002

NortonDC: I think you would have to heat pretty much every breakfast cereal, including granola, to make all the ingredients stick.

My question is -- have they studied any products that are not made by food giants like pepsico? Will you get the same effect from bread you bake at home? What about mashed potatoes? Hmm?
posted by jennyjenny at 10:25 AM on April 24, 2002

Acrylamide is nasty stuff. I hope this turns out to be a mistake.

However, the problem with most "Does-X-cause-cancer?" research is that most cancers take years or decades to appear but research is funded on a timeline usually much shorter than that. So, instead of doing long term studies, researchers just megadose test animals (to 'mimic' long term cumulative exposure) with whatever the test agent is and see what happens. This was the kind of research that erroneously branded saccharin as carcinogenic.

Here's the rub: your body can handle low-level chronic exposure to things much better than high dose acute exposure. Here's the second rub: cancer is a probability phenomenon. Each time one of your cells divides, there is a small non-zero chance it will mutate and another small chance that mutation will lead to cancer. Therefore, anything that causes cell damage, loss, or death will increase your probability of developing cancer. For example, think of the thousands of cells you scrape off the inside of your mouth when you brush your teeth that have to be replaced. That's thousands of unnecessary cell divisions and thousands more 'chances' to get mouth cancer every day! Gonna keep brushing your teeth? I am.
posted by plaino at 10:35 AM on April 24, 2002

Good thing I'm on the Atkins diet.
posted by evanizer at 11:45 AM on April 24, 2002

Since we're all getting closer to death each day anyway, I stay away from the serious death threats (e.g. drinking poison) and ignore the smaller risks (e.g. being outside while it's sunny). So far, so good.
posted by jaden at 12:00 PM on April 24, 2002

Everything causes cancer. Joe Jackson told me that back in '82.
posted by brand-gnu at 12:35 PM on April 24, 2002

Apparently, all I'm supposed to eat is broccoli and dark chocolate.
posted by NortonDC at 1:34 PM on April 24, 2002

I take that back: too much caffeine in chocolate.

Maybe raw potatos and dry oatmeal. Yummy--two great tastes that taste great together!
posted by NortonDC at 3:12 PM on April 24, 2002

I am beginning to become convinced that alarmist scientists cause cancer. For crying out loud, bread is now a source of carcinogens? The staple food of mankind for over 6,000 years?
posted by darukaru at 4:26 PM on April 24, 2002

I think its only the "rectal cancer white" variety thats bad for you. whole grain is still ok.
posted by redhead at 8:40 PM on April 24, 2002

Followup: This is being taken very seriously and there is already a tremendous amount of scientific attention being brought to bear on the questions raised. This is not going to fade into the background noise.
posted by NortonDC at 2:12 PM on April 27, 2002

NsJen : fantastic, working the nightshift ey? I won't worry to much about these potatoes and other warnings... yes everything causes cancer apparently.

on the oter hand.. I can't help being repelled each time I see some news about breastcancer and they show that dang breast-flattening machine.
Can I please get a close-up of a prostate cancer check next time it's discussed in the news?
No? Fine, then don't show me that machine and flattened breasts either, it scares me!
posted by dabitch at 10:14 AM on April 28, 2002

« Older The Segway revolution has begun.   |   Elmo appears before Congress. Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments