Bacon is rather addictive thanks to its briny mix of sweet and salty flavors. The decadence of eating these greasy bacon strips may, however, raise questions of whether it really holds nutritional value as well as if eating too much can cause any harm.
Here are the things that happen to your body when you eat bacon:
1. You'll obtain some good fats — and some "not so good" fats
Bacon, which is made up of pork belly, is very fatty. But no one's complaining! That's one of the reasons that it's so juicy and addictive. However, it is important to know just the kind of fats contained in bacon strips.
According to The Nutrition Journal, bacon is made up of 50% monounsaturated fats, 40% saturated fats, and 10% polyunsaturated fats. If in appropriate amounts, these three can make up a well-balanced diet.
- Monounsaturated fats are beneficial to your health as they can help balance cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Polyunsaturated fats, which are found in many fish products, are also good for your heart and cholesterol levels.
- Saturated fats sometimes have a bad rep. They're mostly found in animal products, and should be consumed in small/moderate quantities.
Now, bacon contains about 40% of saturated fats in every serving, which indicates that you should limit your consumption of bacon and try to get more of saturated fats from plant sources like in coconut oil.
2. You'll also obtain numerous vitamins
It is lesser known information but bacon also contains a lot of vitamins. This includes vitamins including B6 and B12 along with iron, zinc, magnesium, and selenium. There are, however, more nutritious sources of these vitamins, including leafy greens and lean meats.
3. The grease may result in a gut imbalance
The World Journal of Gastroenterology says that consuming large amounts of greasy foods or saturated fats can negatively impact the natural balance of your gut microbiota. This is because processed fats and oils can create more gut bacteria that harm the necessary bacterias that our gut naturally thrives on.
So, it is best advised to turn to healthier fats like those obtained from avocado and which can actually help balance our body's fatty acids.
4. You may increase your risk for cancer
Processed meats like bacon and sausages are classified as Group 1 carcinogens because they have been proven to be able to lead to cancers. Such processed meats are particularly linked to colorectal cancers. However, this is not the only major cause of cancer, your general lifestyle also contributes to such cancer risks.
5. Eating bacon frequently may be problematic for people with hypertension
According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, the large amounts of grease and salt in bacon consumed regularly can cause issues for people with consistently high blood pressure.
The study states that if you don't have blood pressure issues or a history of this in your family, and you eat a balanced diet and exercise, bacon on a regular basis might not have much of an effect, though.
BOTTOM LINE: Eat bacon in moderation!