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Could nitrates in vegetables pose cancer risk? New study asks

Dubbed “nutrition’s Jekyll and Hyde”, nitrate and its health effects have been questioned for a long time.

Hidden in foods like ham, bacon, and sausages, the compounds could potentially hike your risk of cancer, according to previous research.

However, other studies have also found various cardiovascular health benefits coming from dietary sources of nitrate like beetroots and leafy greens.

Now, the research team from Edith Cowan University’s (ECU) Nutrition and Health Innovation Research Institute hopes to settle this debate once and for all.

Source seems important

Dr Catherine Bondonno, who led the review, published in Trends in Food Science and Technology, suggested the source where nitrate comes from might be key.

READ MORE: Dr Mosley recommends ‘protein-packed’ breakfast that could ‘protect against Alzheimer’s’

She said: “We get nitrate from three major dietary sources: meat, water and vegetables.

“Nitrate’s reputation as a health threat stems from 1970, when two studies

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