Vegetarians have 14% lower cancer risk than meat-eaters, study finds

Oxford University research also finds pescatarians have 10% reduced risk compared with those who eat meat regularly

Vegetarians have a 14% lower chance of developing cancer than carnivores, according to a large study that links meat-eating to a heightened risk of the disease.

A team of researchers from Oxford University analysed data on more than 470,000 Britons and found that pescatarians had a 10% reduced risk. Compared with people who eat meat regularly – defined as more than five times a week – those who consumed small amounts had a 2% lower risk of developing cancer, the study found.

Low meat-eaters – who consume meat five or fewer times a week – had a 9% lower risk of developing bowel cancer than regular meat-eaters.

Vegetarian women were 18% less likely than those who ate meat regularly to develop postmenopausal breast cancer, though that may be due to their lower body mass index.

Vegetarian men have a 31% lower risk of prostate cancer while among male pescatarians it is 20% lower.

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