Red Meat’s Affect On Your Health

Red Meat’s Affect On Your HealthCardiologists are always warning patients to refrain from eating a lot of meat, as it is probably not the best thing for heart health.

However, a recent study suggests it all depends on the type of meat one consumes. Publishing their study online in the journal Circulation, the researchers from Harvard report eating processed meats like bologna, sausage and bacon raise a person’s risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. On the other hand, the analysis indicates consumption of unprocessed meat like port, beef and lamb, does not increase the risk for either of these health problems.

Data from 20 large studies on meat and health were looked at, with researchers finding there was a 42% and 19% risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes associated with processed meats, respectively. Red meat was found to have no significant effects. Processed meat and red meat were found to have approximately the same amount of saturated fat and cholesterol, even so, the researchers said processed meat with four times more sodium and
50% more nitrate preservatives than the red meat, had an adverse effect on heart disease and diabetes, compared with fat.

Studies have associated heavy consumption of red meat with a shorter life, a higher risk of diabetes, colon cancer, and cardiovascular disease. But, it does not mean one has to eliminate red meat from one’s diet in pursuit of better health.

However, the meat industry views the matter differently, with the American Meat Institute Foundation (AIMF) saying meat was a rich source of iron, protein, zinc and amino acids, the keys to good health. According to the AMIF, this is just one of many studies to demonstrate processed meat is a healthy part of a balanced diet.

All those with a question on getting healthier in the Tri-States, can email Rajah at, who will do their best to get local and national experts to answer your question.