Every Victoria Day, 3 generations of family friends gather for dinner and a fireworks display. This tradition has been going on for more than 40 years and its great fun! It’s particularly amazing to see the change in the kids from year to year… but one thing that seems never to change, is the dinner menu -Hot Dogs being front and centre.
A very good friend, who happens to be a holistic pharmacist and extremely knowledgeable in natural medicine, copied me on an email she sent to her friends and family which I would like to share with you today – it will make you stop and think twice about ever eating a hot dog again!
“After our discussion about hot dogs the other day, I decided to look into their composition a bit further. I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t leading you astray on the issue, in the event that manufacturing had changed in recent years. Plus, I get a lot of nutritional questions so I wanted to make sure I had my facts straight.
Hot dog are often made from advanced meat recovery or meat slurry. Advanced meat recovery is a slaughterhouse process by which the last traces of usable meat are removed from bones and other carcass materials after the primal cuts have been carved off manually. The meat produced in this manner can contain no more than 150(±30) milligrams of calcium per 100 grams product, as calcium in such high concentrations in the product would be indicative of bone being mixed with the meat. Products that exceed the calcium content limit must be labeled “mechanically separated beef or pork” in the ingredients statement. You will also see that term on some deli/packaged meats.
Even if the product is labeled 100% beef, that does not mean that it contains quality meat. It means that the material in the hot dog all comes from the cow, but in addition to the meat it can contain, muscle, cartilage, skin and fat and some bone material as noted above. Schneider’s say that their dogs are made with “quality meat” yet they acknowledge that their dogs are indeed made with the meat scraps left over after roast, steaks, and ground beef is made, along with fat (skin and fat removed after making the other cuts of meat).
I know that kids love hot dogs, and we have all eaten them over the years and survived. Having them a few times a year is likely not a problem, but most hot dogs are high in fat, salt, and preservatives like nitrates which are all linked to health problems including cancer. Turkey and chicken dogs are usually healthier – less salt and fat. Veggie dogs are also a much healthier option.
Lastly, a point of interest….the term “hot dog” goes back hundreds of years ago when it was believed that dog meat was used to make these meat products and animal intestines were used as the casing. Now most are made with a cellulose or collagen casing.
So there you have it!”