Saturday, March 17, 2012

Dangers of red meat

All red meat is bad for you, no matter what the serving size, according to a recent article in the Los Angeles Times. A study that followed more than 110,000 adults for more than 20 years has found significant correlation between eating red meat and the chance of dying. Even just adding a 3-ounce serving of unprocessed red meat (no bigger than a deck of cards) daily was enough to increase the chance of dying by 13 percent during the course of the study.


According to the article, "All red meat is bad for your, new study says:"
"Even worse, adding an extra daily serving of processed red meat, such as a hot dog or two slices of bacon, was linked to a 20% higher risk of death during the study.

"Any red meat you eat contributes to the risk," said An Pan, a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and lead author of the study, published online Monday in the Archives of Internal Medicine."
 
So what are your options? Obviously not eating red meat would be best:
"Eating a serving of nuts instead of beef or pork was associated with a 19% lower risk of dying during the study. The team said choosing poultry or whole grains as a substitute was linked with a 14% reduction in mortality risk; low-fat dairy or legumes, 10%; and fish, 7%."
What is it about red meat that makes it so bad for your health? Researchers have hypothesized that the nitrates and nitrites used to preserve them, the chemicals created by high-temptertaure cooking, and the iron and saturated fat in the meat may be to blame. 


If you really are absolutely unwilling to cut red meat out of your diet at all costs, the researchers recommend limiting yourself to one or two servings of red meat per week and to eliminate all bacon or other processed meats (such as hot dogs). 

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