Meat consumption and colorectal cancer: a review of epidemiologic evidence

Nutr Rev. 2001 Feb;59(2):37-47. doi: 10.1111/j.1753-4887.2001.tb06974.x.


This article reviews the epidemiologic evidence on colorectal cancer risk and meat consumption from 32 case-control and 13 cohort studies published in English from 1970 to 1999 and retrieved from the Medline database. The results support the hypothesis that meat consumption is associated with a modest increase in colorectal cancer risk. This association, however, seems to have been more consistently found for red meat and processed meat. The studies on cooking methods and meat "doneness" are not consistent and the evidence is not conclusive.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cohort Studies
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / etiology
  • Cooking
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Meat / adverse effects*
  • Meat Products / adverse effects
  • Risk Factors