Eating ultra-processed foods—drinks, sugary products, fats, and sauces that include many ingredients and tend to be high in fat, saturated fat, sugar, and salt—may increase cancer risk, according to researchers. Among nearly 105,000 study participants, 2,228 of whom were diagnosed with cancer during the five-year follow-up, a 10 percent increase in the proportion of ultra-processed foods consumed was associated with a 12 percent higher overall cancer risk. Eating highly processed foods regularly was linked to an 11 percent increase in breast cancer risk. Research shows that Americans get 61 percent of their calories from highly processed foods.
The BMJ, February 2018