For years, the health community has pointed to meat consumption and breast cancer as a possible cause and effect. But according to a new study by the National Institutes of Health and the American Association of Retired Persons, there is no link between breast cancer and meat consumption.

Published in the International Journal of Cancer, the study tracked 120,755 post-menopausal women, who provided information about their food consumption patterns from 1995 to 1996. The research also collected data on meat preparation methods that the women used. For the next eight years after that point, 3,818 women developed some form of breast cancer.

The researchers concluded that the study's findings do not support the hypothesis that a high intake of meat, red meat, processed meat, meat cooked at high temperatures or meat mutagens are associated with increased risk of breast cancer, notes Geoffery Kabat, researcher at Albert Einstein collage in New York, and lead researcher on this current cancer study.

This is a significant new finding for the meat industry as well as an important new development in the ongoing evolution of cancer research, prevention and treatment protocols. It also will be interesting to see if this new study gets as much media attention and prioritization as past studies claiming a more direct link between meat and breast cancer. Easy money says it won't.