Friday, July 10, 2009

All-Star Game attendees encouraged
to eat ‘Cured Meats for Healthy Heartbeat’

Medical research shows hot dogs and other cured meats offer health benefits

Nothing goes together like baseball and hot dogs, and with a growing body of medical evidence that suggests dietary nitrates - like those commonly found in hot dogs - are vital to the prevention of heart disease, attendees at the 2009 Major League Baseball All Star Game July 14 in St. Louis, MO, are being encouraged to enjoy both.

“Those attending this year’s All-Star game should enjoy a hot dog during the game knowing that it takes cured meats for healthy heartbeats,” said Trent Loos, a sixth generation farmer/rancher and founder of the Faces Of Agriculture.

For the past 10 years, Dr. Nathan Bryan, a medical researcher at the Brown Foundation Institute of Molecular Medicine, The University of Texas, Houston Health Sciences Center, has been working to determine the importance of dietary nitrite and nitrate consumption as a means to prevent and treat cardiovascular disease and other diseases associated with nitric oxide insufficiency in the diet. In the process, he also has examined long-standing claims that the compounds cause certain cancers and found that indeed those risks do not exist.

Since the early 1980s there have been numerous reports on the association of N-nitrosamines and human cancers but a causative link between nitrite and nitrate exposure and cancer is still missing, according to Bryan. Furthermore, he noted that a two-year study on the carcinogenicity of nitrite by the National Institute of Health has conclusively found that there was no increased evidence of carcinogenic activity in male or female rats or mice as a result.

Moreover, if nitrite were a carcinogen, Bryan said people would be advised to avoid swallowing since saliva contains nitrite. Nitrites also are pumped directly into the heart for therapy purposes when heart attacks occur, he said.

“Nitrites and nitrates are naturally found in our bodies and are in no way a health risk. Quite simply, they are good for us and essential for our cardiovascular health,” said Bryant. He noted that cardio-protective levels of nitrites and nitrates can easily be achieved by increasing consumption of nitrite/nitrate-rich foods such as cured meats and leafy green vegetables.

“As a food producer, I’m quite excited about the work being conducted by Bryan and others regarding the medical benefits of hot dogs and other cured meats. I find it amazing that the much-feared nitrites that groups have been trying to scare us about all these years are really nothing more than a vitamin-like substance that turn out to be good for us and our hearts,” said Loos.

To tell the story of the health benefits associated with cured meats, Loos has hired a mobile media truck to drive around St. Louis on the day of the All-Star game with a billboard that simply reads, “Cured Meats for Healthy Heartbeats”. The mobile billboard will feature a young consumer enjoying a tasty and “healthy” hot dog, he said.

“A decade worth of research proves the health benefit of nitrites and nitrates in our diets. It is critical that this message begin to be heard and that people recognize it is okay, and actually good for them to enjoy cured meats in moderation and as part of a balanced diet,” said Loos.


Interviews/media availability:
To schedule an interview with Trent Loos or Dr. Nathan Bryant, call (515)418-8185 or email Loos at trent@loostales.com. Loos will be in the St. Louis area on game day and available for interviews.


For more information on meat as a health food:

- Cardioprotective actions of nitrite therapy and dietary considerations

- Food sources of nitrates and nitrites: the physiologic context for potential health benefits

- Nitrate in foods: harmful or healthy?

- Dietary nitrite prevents hypercholesterolemic microvascular inflammation and reverses endothelial dysfunction

- Cardiovascular prevention by dietary nitrate and nitrite

- Forward by from the medical textbook: "Food, Nutrition and the Nitric Oxide Pathway: Bioactivaton and Bioavailability." Written by Nobel Laureate Lou Ignarro

- Watch a video with Dr. Nathan Bryan

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