{"id":606258692402,"title":"Is Bologna Bad for You? A Dietitian Answers","created_at":"2023-09-10T23:38:45-04:00","body_html":"\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e\/\/ \u003c![CDATA[\n{\n \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\",\n \"@type\": \"Article\",\n \"headline\": \"Is Bologna Bad for You? A Dietitian Answers\",\n \"keywords\": \"is bologna bad for you, is bologna good for you, is bologna unhealthy, is bologna healthy\",\n \"description\": \"Our research team and dietitian analyze medical studies on bologna and processed meat consumption to give our take on whether or not this cut of meat is bad for you. We pick our healthiest bologna brand and explain what's actually in bologna.\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/is-bologna-bad-for-you\",\n\"author\": [\n {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Calloway Cook\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/calloway-cook\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/calloway-cook\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"President\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"entrepreneurship, dietary supplements, herbal supplements, eCommerce, medical research\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": \"S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University\"\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n }\n],\n\"editor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"DJ Mazzoni\",\n \"honorificSuffix\": [\n \"M.S.\",\n \"R.D.\",\n \"C.D.N.\",\n \"C.S.C.S.\"\n ],\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/dj-mazzoni\",\n \"sameAs\": [\n \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/dj-mazzoni-rd-cdn-cscs-00a33038\/\",\n \"http:\/\/djmazzoni.com\/\"\n ],\n \"jobTitle\": \"Medical Reviewer\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"exercise, drugs, pharmaceutical, health, workout, strength and conditioning, nutrition, dietetics, medicine, medical research, scientific research, scientific method, healthcare, patient care, wellness\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"State University of New York College Oswego\",\n \"D’Youville College\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"image\": {\n\"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n\"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Is_Bologna_Bad_For_You_Thumbnail.png?v=1694403968\",\n\"width\": \"2550\",\n\"height\": \"2550\"\n},\n\"citation\": [\n\"https:\/\/www.mashed.com\/296853\/this-is-why-bologna-is-so-cheap\/\", \n\"https:\/\/www.oscarmayer.com\/product\/00044700008577\/bologna\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/34455534\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/35291893\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/27309597\",\n\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/good-chop-review\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3278747\/\",\n\"https:\/\/grasslandbeef.com\/products\/beef-bologna-nitratenitrite-msg-free\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/16792218\/\",\n\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/fish-oil-supplements-vs-fish-consumption\"\n],\n\"mentions\": [{\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"chicken\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"pork\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"beef\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"turkey\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Brand\",\n \"name\": \"Mashed\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Brand\",\n \"name\": \"Oscar Mayer\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"processed meat\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"cancer\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Brand\",\n \"name\": \"Grassland Meats\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Sanne Vloet\"\n}\n],\n\"datePublished\": \"2023-09-10\",\n\"copyrightHolder\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n},\n\"publisher\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/\",\n \"description\": \"Illuminate Labs is the most transparent supplement company in the U.S., and is a leading publisher of research-based health information.\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"supplements, science, nutrition, exercise, health, medication, pharmaceutical, wellness, diet, weight loss, medical research\",\n \"publishingPrinciples\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/editorial-guidelines\",\n \"memberOf\": [\n {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"U.S. Chamber of Commerce\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/www.uschamber.com\/\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Certified B Corp\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/www.bcorporation.net\/en-us\/\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Natural Products Association\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/www.npanational.org\/\"\n }\n ], \n \"logo\": {\n \"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Illuminate_Labs_Favicon_48x48_7595c3cc-e27b-47b8-a4fe-edcc7ed9b29a.png?v=1666502785\", \n \"width\": 48,\n \"height\": 48\n},\n \"foundingDate\": \"2019-01-30\",\n \"sameAs\": [\n \"https:\/\/www.instagram.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/twitter.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/company\/illuminate-labs-supplements\",\n \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/channel\/UCpgSJAsIPb-fZ25djtTxBEA\"\n ]\n }\n}\n\/\/ ]]\u003e\u003c\/script\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg alt=\"\" src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Is_Bologna_Bad_For_You_Article_Header_Image_Optimized.png?v=1694403456\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan class=\"dc\"\u003eB\u003c\/span\u003eologna is a popular deli meat in the US that’s named for an Italian city where it originated. It’s often cheaper than other cuts of meat, so many consumers are curious about whether or not that means it’s unhealthier.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBut what’s actually in bologna? Why is it so cheap? Is it healthy or is it bad for you? And what’s the healthiest type of bologna?\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIn this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more, as we explain what’s typically in bologna and share our opinion on whether or not this deli meat is unhealthy, based on a review of medical studies.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe’ll explain why bologna is so cheap, give our pick for the healthiest type of bologna, and share a healthier alternative.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWhat’s in Bologna?\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eBologna is not one specific cut of meat, but rather tends to be a blend of different ground meats.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eAny combination of chicken, pork, beef and turkey could be included in bologna\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, and given that it’s a mashup of different cuts of meat, many people online suggest that the cheapest cuts of meat are used.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIn fact, Mashed has an \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/www.mashed.com\/296853\/this-is-why-bologna-is-so-cheap\/\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/www.mashed.com\/296853\/this-is-why-bologna-is-so-cheap\/\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003earticle\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e claiming that mechanically separated chicken is typically the first ingredient in cheap cuts of bologna, meaning that \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003ebone and cartilage can also be included in the final product, not just lean meat.\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOscar Mayer is one of the most popular bologna brands, and their product is made with chicken, beef and pork (but not turkey) according to the brand’s \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/www.oscarmayer.com\/product\/00044700008577\/bologna\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/www.oscarmayer.com\/product\/00044700008577\/bologna\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ewebsite\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA Mashed video shows how bologna is made from start to finish:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ciframe width=\"560\" height=\"315\" src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/_fJZk6XMSP0?si=34BzSRGsftWD1d5V\" title=\"YouTube video player\" frameborder=\"0\" allow=\"accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share\" allowfullscreen=\"\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIs Bologna Bad for You?\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere aren’t very many medical studies on bologna consumption specifically and health effects, but there are a large number of studies on processed meat consumption and health effects.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eBologna would be categorized as a processed meat because it undergoes treatment such as curing or the use of chemical preservatives to extend its shelf life.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eProcessed meat consumption was associated with 18% greater risk of colorectal cancer, 21% greater risk of colon cancer and 22% greater risk of rectal cancer compared to individuals who avoided processed meat\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, according to a 2021 \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/34455534\/\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/34455534\/\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emeta-study\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eProcessed meat consumption also increases the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke according to a 2022 \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/35291893\/\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/35291893\/\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/27309597\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/27309597\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e published in the \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ci data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eInternational Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/i\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e documented that \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eprocessed meat intake is also associated with increased risk of developing diabetes.\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOverall, it seems quite clear from the available medical evidence that bologna is bad for you.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt’s likely fine in moderation, as are most foods, but we can’t find a single medical study suggesting that bologna consumption improves health, while very many medical studies find that processed meat consumption worsens health and increases health risks.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWhat’s the Healthiest Bologna?\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eGiven that processed meat generally is unhealthy, the best way to mitigate negative health effects from its consumption, in our opinion, is to source grass-fed meat and meat products without any unhealthy additives.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAs we documented in our review of \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/good-chop-review\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/good-chop-review\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eGood Chop\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003egrass-fed meat is clinically shown to be nutritionally richer than conventionally-raised meat.\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt also has a more optimal omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acid ratio, which is especially important in higher-fat cuts of meat like bologna.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eChoosing a bologna brand that’s free of unhealthy additives can also make a difference.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eSodium phosphates\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e is an ingredient in Oscar Mayer bologna, and \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003ethis preservative may be associated with increased risk of chronic kidney disease\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e according to a 2012 \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3278747\/\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3278747\/\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eGrassland Meats sells a beef bologna that’s 100% grass-fed and is free of synthetic preservatives and phosphates. Link \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/grasslandbeef.com\/products\/beef-bologna-nitratenitrite-msg-free\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/grasslandbeef.com\/products\/beef-bologna-nitratenitrite-msg-free\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ehere\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e for those interested.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eLocal butchers may also have suggestions for bologna cuts meeting the criteria established above.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHealthy Sandwich Recipes\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFor readers of this article who were planning to make bologna sandwiches, here are a few healthier sandwich recipes from YouTube creator Sanne Vloet that may be interesting to check out:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\" mce-data-marked=\"1\"\u003e\u003ciframe title=\"YouTube video player\" src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/qmCV0TMKWw0?si=6wG3HGOVuWd83gWx\" height=\"315\" width=\"560\" allowfullscreen=\"\" allow=\"accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share\" frameborder=\"0\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eOur Healthy Protein Picks\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u003cimg alt=\"\" src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Beef_Jerky_Image.png?v=1674722574\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003eFor consumers who want convenient, no-cooking protein options we believe there are some good options on the market.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eGrass-fed beef jerky\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cspan\u003e is a good choice, because meat from grass-fed animals is shown in \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/16792218\/\"\u003emedical research\u003c\/a\u003e to be nutritionally superior to meat from conventionally-raised animals.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/amzn.to\/3XDd1Bm\" rel=\"sponsored\"\u003eThe New Primal Grass-Fed Beef Jerky Sticks\u003c\/a\u003e is our top pick for a healthier meat product. They're convenient (no cooking required), \u003cstrong\u003esourced from exclusively grass-fed animals, free of nitrates and nitrites and also free of added sugar.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003eInterested consumers can check out The New Primal beef jerky sticks \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/amzn.to\/3XDd1Bm\" rel=\"sponsored\"\u003eat this link\u003c\/a\u003e to the brand's official Amazon listing.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSardines\u003c\/strong\u003e are a cheap and convenient canned protein option with significant health benefits. As we documented in our review on the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/fish-oil-supplements-vs-fish-consumption\"\u003ebenefits of fish oil supplements\u003c\/a\u003e, fish oil \u003cstrong\u003ecan support healthy cholesterol levels and provides potent anti-inflammatory effects.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/amzn.to\/3Hzw1ev\" rel=\"sponsored\"\u003eWild Planet Sardines\u003c\/a\u003e is our top pick because they're sustainably sourced, packed in water and free of questionable additive ingredients. Sardines are also high in calcium, providing 15% DV in only 140 calories.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003eInterested consumers can check out Wild Plant Sardines \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/amzn.to\/3Hzw1ev\" rel=\"sponsored\"\u003eat this link\u003c\/a\u003e to the brand's official Amazon listing.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eConclusion\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eBologna is not a healthy choice, and we recommend avoiding processed meat entirely.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eNot only is processed meat associated with negative health effects in medical studies like increased risk of certain types of cancer, increased risk of diabetes and increased risk of cardiovascular events, most commercial bologna brands use questionable additives like preservatives and corn syrup that make the finished product even worse for you.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eBologna is a mix of beef, chicken, pork and occasionally turkey, and most manufacturers do not source from grass-fed animals.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIn this article we featured some healthier packaged alternatives to bologna, and also featured a video with some healthier sandwich recipes than a bologna sandwich.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\" style=\"font-weight: 400;\" data-mce-style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eNearly anything, including bologna, can be eaten in moderation as part of a healthy diet, but there are so many options in our opinion that are both healthier, and taste better, than bologna.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e","blog_id":49281925193,"author":"Calloway Cook","user_id":26601750601,"published_at":"2023-09-10T23:51:11-04:00","updated_at":"2023-09-12T20:46:57-04:00","summary_html":"\u003cmeta charset=\"utf-8\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-ShadowBevel_1hoxq\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-Box_375yx\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-VerticalStack_1fqes\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cp class=\"JZCmJ\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWe analyze medical studies on bologna and processed meat consumption to give our take on whether or not this cut of meat is bad for you. We pick our healthiest bologna brand and explain what's actually in bologna.\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-ShadowBevel_1hoxq\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-Box_375yx\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-VerticalStack_1fqes\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\n\u003cdiv class=\"Polaris-HorizontalStack_dv6q6\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e\n\u003c\/div\u003e","template_suffix":"","handle":"is-bologna-bad-for-you","tags":"_related:nutrition"}

Is Bologna Bad for You? A Dietitian Answers

Is Bologna Bad for You? A Dietitian Answers


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Bologna is a popular deli meat in the US that’s named for an Italian city where it originated. It’s often cheaper than other cuts of meat, so many consumers are curious about whether or not that means it’s unhealthier.

But what’s actually in bologna? Why is it so cheap? Is it healthy or is it bad for you? And what’s the healthiest type of bologna?

In this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more, as we explain what’s typically in bologna and share our opinion on whether or not this deli meat is unhealthy, based on a review of medical studies.

We’ll explain why bologna is so cheap, give our pick for the healthiest type of bologna, and share a healthier alternative.

What’s in Bologna?

Bologna is not one specific cut of meat, but rather tends to be a blend of different ground meats.

Any combination of chicken, pork, beef and turkey could be included in bologna, and given that it’s a mashup of different cuts of meat, many people online suggest that the cheapest cuts of meat are used.

In fact, Mashed has an article claiming that mechanically separated chicken is typically the first ingredient in cheap cuts of bologna, meaning that bone and cartilage can also be included in the final product, not just lean meat.

Oscar Mayer is one of the most popular bologna brands, and their product is made with chicken, beef and pork (but not turkey) according to the brand’s website.

A Mashed video shows how bologna is made from start to finish:

Is Bologna Bad for You?

There aren’t very many medical studies on bologna consumption specifically and health effects, but there are a large number of studies on processed meat consumption and health effects.

Bologna would be categorized as a processed meat because it undergoes treatment such as curing or the use of chemical preservatives to extend its shelf life.

Processed meat consumption was associated with 18% greater risk of colorectal cancer, 21% greater risk of colon cancer and 22% greater risk of rectal cancer compared to individuals who avoided processed meat, according to a 2021 meta-study.

Processed meat consumption also increases the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke according to a 2022 medical review.

A medical review published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition documented that processed meat intake is also associated with increased risk of developing diabetes.

Overall, it seems quite clear from the available medical evidence that bologna is bad for you.

It’s likely fine in moderation, as are most foods, but we can’t find a single medical study suggesting that bologna consumption improves health, while very many medical studies find that processed meat consumption worsens health and increases health risks.

What’s the Healthiest Bologna?

Given that processed meat generally is unhealthy, the best way to mitigate negative health effects from its consumption, in our opinion, is to source grass-fed meat and meat products without any unhealthy additives.

As we documented in our review of Good Chop, grass-fed meat is clinically shown to be nutritionally richer than conventionally-raised meat.

It also has a more optimal omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acid ratio, which is especially important in higher-fat cuts of meat like bologna.

Choosing a bologna brand that’s free of unhealthy additives can also make a difference.

Sodium phosphates is an ingredient in Oscar Mayer bologna, and this preservative may be associated with increased risk of chronic kidney disease according to a 2012 medical review.

Grassland Meats sells a beef bologna that’s 100% grass-fed and is free of synthetic preservatives and phosphates. Link here for those interested.

Local butchers may also have suggestions for bologna cuts meeting the criteria established above.

Healthy Sandwich Recipes

For readers of this article who were planning to make bologna sandwiches, here are a few healthier sandwich recipes from YouTube creator Sanne Vloet that may be interesting to check out:


Our Healthy Protein Picks

For consumers who want convenient, no-cooking protein options we believe there are some good options on the market.

Grass-fed beef jerky is a good choice, because meat from grass-fed animals is shown in medical research to be nutritionally superior to meat from conventionally-raised animals.

The New Primal Grass-Fed Beef Jerky Sticks is our top pick for a healthier meat product. They're convenient (no cooking required), sourced from exclusively grass-fed animals, free of nitrates and nitrites and also free of added sugar.

Interested consumers can check out The New Primal beef jerky sticks at this link to the brand's official Amazon listing.

Sardines are a cheap and convenient canned protein option with significant health benefits. As we documented in our review on the benefits of fish oil supplements, fish oil can support healthy cholesterol levels and provides potent anti-inflammatory effects.

Wild Planet Sardines is our top pick because they're sustainably sourced, packed in water and free of questionable additive ingredients. Sardines are also high in calcium, providing 15% DV in only 140 calories.

Interested consumers can check out Wild Plant Sardines at this link to the brand's official Amazon listing.

Stay up-to-date on our research reviews

Conclusion

Bologna is not a healthy choice, and we recommend avoiding processed meat entirely.

Not only is processed meat associated with negative health effects in medical studies like increased risk of certain types of cancer, increased risk of diabetes and increased risk of cardiovascular events, most commercial bologna brands use questionable additives like preservatives and corn syrup that make the finished product even worse for you.

Bologna is a mix of beef, chicken, pork and occasionally turkey, and most manufacturers do not source from grass-fed animals.

In this article we featured some healthier packaged alternatives to bologna, and also featured a video with some healthier sandwich recipes than a bologna sandwich.

Nearly anything, including bologna, can be eaten in moderation as part of a healthy diet, but there are so many options in our opinion that are both healthier, and taste better, than bologna.