U.S. doctors online nowAsk doctors free
A 33-year-old member asked:

Do hot dogs cause cancer?

3 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Charles Cattano
Gastroenterology 40 years experience
Eat fewer hot dogs: Hot dogs are relatively cheap and taste good. Watch out however for what's in them--read labels carefully to assess what meat is used and how much fat and preservatives are involved in their manufacture. Excessive dietary animal fats have been associated with an increased risk of cancers of the GI tract . Instead, eat a well balanced diet high in monosaturates, whole grains, fruits, vegetables.
Dr. Morton Levitt
A Verified Doctoranswered
Pathology, Anatomic and Clinical 50 years experience
Hot Dogs and Cancer: Hot dogs and other processed meats containing nitrites as preservatives are associated with cancer in some studies, since the nitrites can be converted to cancer-causing nitrosamines. Vitamin c is known to decrease the actions of nitrosamines in the body.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
I doubt it: Despite the presence of nitrites as preservatives and heterocyclic hydrocarbons that mutate DNA in cell cultures (as in any flame-cooked food), studies are inconsistent and even the 2005 study in the JAMA (red meat) shows only at best a weak effect. "The Cancer Project" is a group of activist vegetarians citing studies selectively and, in my opinion, misleadingly. It's their billboard.
Last updated Jun 25, 2020
Connect with a U.S. board-certified doctor by text or video anytime, anywhere.
24/7 visits - just $39!
50% off with $15/month membership


Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.