So, science has more bad news for meat-lovers…

From the people who brought you the heartbreaking news that bacon can lead to cancer, we bring you more heart breaking meat-related news. A new study has found that people who eat grilled meat might be at a higher risk for kidney cancer. And not just red meat, you guys. Chicken too.

Researchers at the University of Texas compared 659 patients recently diagnosed with kidney cancer to 699 people who are are living similar lives, but are cancer-free.

The American Cancer Society made this statement: “Kidney cancer is among the 10 most common cancers in both men and women. For reasons that are not totally clear, the rate of new kidney cancers has been rising since the 1990s, although this seems to have leveled off in the past few years.” They added that kidney cancer is one of the top 10 most common cancers found in both men and women.

The ACS noted that the increase in kidney cancer diagnoses might be partially due to the use of newer imaging tests, which are better at detecting cancer. However, the study’s researchers also looked at grilled/charred meat — both processed and unprocessed — as a potential problematic source.

“The American/Western dietary pattern consists largely of red and processed meats, and the results of the current study suggest that the association between this dietary pattern and cancer may be in part explained by exposure to meat cooking mutagens,” they wrote. They found that people with two genetic mutations were at even higher risk from grilled meat, but one cancer expert wrote that more research is needed: “Once we have identified more genes we will likely be able to identify a subset of the population that is at particularly high risk to develop kidney cancer if they eat meat and processed meat.”

With all this recent news, it seems like the safest solution might be to stop eating meat altogether. But for meat lovers, that’s crazy and not a reasonable option. So Reuters makes this suggestion: When cooking meat over an open flame or at a high temperature, keep a close eye on it and avoid charring. Which will obviously make grilling way less fun and tasty, but if less char equals better health. . . well, the choice is yours, friends.

(Featured image via Shutterstock)