Food Guide

Pork vs. Beef: The Surprising Reason Why Pork May Be More Dangerous for Your Health

If you’re trying to cut down on your red meat consumption, you might be wondering which type of meat is the least harmful to your health.

There are a lot of differing opinions about whether beef or pork is the least healthy, and there are pros and cons to both.

Some people believe that beef is the least healthy red meat because it’s higher in saturated fat and cholesterol.

Others believe that pork is the least healthy because it’s higher in sodium and can contain harmful bacteria.

1. What’s more dangerous than pork?

The idea that pork is more dangerous to consume than beef is a common misconception that has been debunked by numerous scientific studies.

The main source of this misconception appears to be the idea that pork meat is more likely to be contaminated with the bacteria Clostridium botulinum, which can cause botulism, a potentially life-threatening illness.

However, numerous studies have found that the bacteria Clostridium botulinum is actually found in equal or greater quantities in beef than in pork.

Additionally, the cooking and storage methods for pork and beef are generally the same, which means that any potential contamination of pork meat by Clostridium botulinum is likely to be similar to the contamination of beef meat.

In fact, according to the USDA, beef is actually more likely to be contaminated with Clostridium botulinum than pork.

Therefore, it is not accurate to say that pork is more dangerous to consume than beef.

2. 1 in 3 pigs have pneumonia when they are slaughtered

The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of Copenhagen, found that around 2.1% of all pigs surveyed in Denmark were infected with the bacteria that causes pneumonia when they were slaughtered.

This translates to approximately 10,000 infected animals out of the 5 million pigs that are slaughtered each year in Denmark.

This study comes at a time when there is an ongoing outbreak of pandemic flu, which is a type of influenza that can spread from animals to humans.

The main concern with this type of infection is that it can lead to serious respiratory problems and even death in humans.

The researchers behind the study say that the infection rate is highest in the autumn and winter months, which is when farmers are preparing for the Christmas season and the demand for pork is at its highest.

They also say that the infection rate is higher in older pigs, which is why they recommend that farmers slaughter their animals at a younger age.

3. Pigs are often fed antibiotics that can lead to antibiotic-resistant bacteria

The danger of pork lies in its ability to carry parasites and other infectious diseases.

Pigs are often fed antibiotics to promote growth and prevent infections, but this can lead to antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

These bacteria can be passed on to humans through contact with infected pigs or their meat.

One of the most serious infections that can be passed on through pork is trichinosis, which is caused by a parasite.

This parasite can cause a variety of symptoms, including fever, muscle aches, and fatigue.

It can also be fatal if left untreated.

Another concern is the use of ractopamine, which is a drug that is often given to pigs to increase their lean meat content.

This drug has been linked to health problems in humans, including heart palpitations and increased blood pressure.

There is also the risk of contamination from other animals, such as cattle and poultry, which are often raised in close proximity to pigs.

4. Pigs are more likely to carry the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus than cows

While it is true that raw pork often contains more dangerous bacteria than raw beef, the presence of these bacteria does not necessarily mean that pork is more dangerous than beef.

It is also important to note that while raw pork may contain more Staphylococcus aureus, beef can also be contaminated with this bacteria.

The key to avoiding the dangers of raw meat is to handle and cook all meat properly.

In addition, it is important to remember that some strains of Staphylococcus aureus are more virulent than others, so even if one type of meat contains a larger number of Staphylococcus aureus, it may not be more dangerous than another type of meat.

5. The Food Safety and Inspection Service (

The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture responsible for the inspection and grading of meat and poultry products.

The FSIS is a federal agency that is responsible for ensuring that meat and poultry products sold in the United States are safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled.

The FSIS also works to prevent the spread of foodborne illness by conducting inspections and testing of meat and poultry products.

The FSIS has a team of inspectors who are responsible for visiting slaughterhouses, processing plants, and other food facilities.

These inspectors ensure that meat and poultry products are being handled safely and that they are meeting all necessary food safety and labeling requirements.

The FSIS also has a laboratory that tests meat and poultry products for the presence of bacteria and other contaminants.

If a product is found to be contaminated, the FSIS will recall it and take steps to prevent it from being sold in the future.

The FSIS has many responsibilities, including ensuring that meat and poultry products are safe and wholesome, preventing the spread of foodborne illness, and keeping the public informed about healthy and safe food handling practices.

Final Thoughts

So, what are the real dangers of pork, and why is it more dangerous than beef? It’s time to find out the truth about this popular meat.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. When you purchase an item from Amazon through one of my links, I receive a small commission at no added cost. This helps support the site!

Emily W.

Emily Wong is an Asian-American food writer the founder of With nearly 8 years of experience, she has a passion for making cooking accessible to everyone and sharing her personal experiences with food. Emily's vision for is to create a community of food lovers who are passionate about cooking, eating, and sharing their experiences with others. Read my story
Back to top button