Physicians' group out to #BanBacon

by Erica Shaffer
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Keep Bacon Off Your Plate billboard in Allentown, Pennsylvania
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine billboard

WASHINGTON – A physician's group is kicking dirt on the notion that bacon makes everything better.

On April 13, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine recently had erected a billboard near Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, Pa., urging baseball fans of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs to keep bacon off their plates. The billboard can be seen traveling east on the Tilgham St. bridge.

According to the committee, "preventable lifestyle diseases" account for seven in 10 deaths in the United States. More than 1 million individuals have diabetes in Pennsylvania, while nearly 3 percent have hypertension. The committee also noted that Pennsylvania is the only northeastern state among the top 20 states with the highest rates of obesity. Additionally, 63 percent of Lehigh County residents struggle with their weight, the committee said.

In response to these statistics, the non-profit group of 12,000 members sent a letter to the minor league team suggesting the IronPigs introduce a new mascot — like broccoli. The team's current mascot is Chris P. Bacon, who engages in constant battles against a group of other costumed processed meat products, including ham, a pulled pork sandwich and a hot dog.

“If broccoli — filled with disease-fighting fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants — were in a race with bacon, it would win every time,” said Physicians Committee dietitian Cameron Wells, MPH, RD.

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research and promotes adopting alternatives to chemical tests on animals.

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