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Lunch meat

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Lunch meat
A platter of cold cuts
Alternative namesCold cuts, luncheon meats, sandwich meats, cooked meats, sliced meats, cold meats, deli meats

Lunch meats—also known as cold cuts, luncheon meats, cooked meats, sliced meats, cold meats, sandwich meats, delicatessens, and deli meats—are precooked or cured meats that are sliced and served cold or hot. They are typically served in sandwiches or on a tray.[1] They can be purchased pre-sliced, usually in vacuum packs, or they can be sliced to order.





Most pre-sliced lunch meats are higher in fat, nitrates, and sodium than those that are sliced to order, as a larger exposed surface requires stronger preservatives.[1] As a result, processed meats may significantly contribute to incidence of heart disease and diabetes, even more so than red meat.[2]

A prospective study following 448,568 people across Europe, showed a positive association between processed meat consumption and mortality caused by cardiovascular disease and cancer.[3] Similarly, a prospective study in the US following half a million people flagged a similar association between death and increased processed meat consumption.[4] The World Cancer Research Fund International guidelines on cancer prevention recommend avoiding all processed meats.[5]



Deli lunch meat is occasionally infected by Listeria. In 2011, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (US CDC) advises that those over age 50 reheat lunch meats to "steaming hot" 165 °F (74 °C) and use them within four days.[6] In 2021, the US CDC reported another wave of Listeria outbreak. The final investigation notice from 2023 advises that "people who are pregnant, aged 65 or older, or have a weakened immune system" reheat deli products to the aforementioned temperature in order to "kill any germs", even when there is no outgoing outbreak.[7]

See also



  1. ^ a b Phil Lempert (27 December 2006). "The 5 things you need to know about deli meats". Today Food. NBC News. Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. Retrieved 17 March 2013.
  2. ^ Micha, Renata; Michas, Georgios; Mozaffarian, Dariush (2012-12-01). "Unprocessed red and processed meats and risk of coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes--an updated review of the evidence". Current Atherosclerosis Reports. 14 (6): 515–524. doi:10.1007/s11883-012-0282-8. ISSN 1534-6242. PMC 3483430. PMID 23001745.
  3. ^ Rohrmann, Sabine; Overvad, Kim; Bueno-de-Mesquita, H. Bas; Jakobsen, Marianne U.; Egeberg, Rikke; Tjønneland, Anne; Nailler, Laura; Boutron-Ruault, Marie-Christine; Clavel-Chapelon, Françoise (2013-01-01). "Meat consumption and mortality--results from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition". BMC Medicine. 11: 63. doi:10.1186/1741-7015-11-63. ISSN 1741-7015. PMC 3599112. PMID 23497300.
  4. ^ Sinha, Rashmi; Cross, Amanda J.; Graubard, Barry I.; Leitzmann, Michael F.; Schatzkin, Arthur (2009-03-23). "Meat intake and mortality: a prospective study of over half a million people". Archives of Internal Medicine. 169 (6): 562–571. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2009.6. ISSN 1538-3679. PMC 2803089. PMID 19307518.
  5. ^ "Animal foods | World Cancer Research Fund International". wcrf.org. Archived from the original on 2015-12-22. Retrieved 2015-12-17.
  6. ^ Weise, Elizabeth (2011-05-04). "CDC: Over 50? Heat cold cuts to 165 degrees to avoid listeria". usatoday.com. USA Today. Retrieved 2022-04-13.
  7. ^ "CDC: Listeria Outbreak Linked to Deli Meat and Cheese". Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 29 March 2023.
  • Media related to Cold cut at Wikimedia Commons