Posted on March 30th, 2009 in coronary artery disease, coronary heart disease, deli meats, disease, heart disease, heart health, overweight, processed foods, processed meat, processed meats, red meat, vegan, vegetarian | No Comments »
The largest and highest quality study about the relation between eating red and processed meat and longevity reports that there is about a 30% greater risk of dying prematurely.
The study included over half a million participants, more than any in the past, and recorded their levels of meat intake. The results were pretty clear and consistent with other studies and what I've been saying for many years... red and processed meat kills. The diseases most identified with read and processed meat consumption were cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Out of the more than 500,000 followed over a 10 year period, 71,252 died prematurely as a result of excess red and processed meat consumption that resulted in cancer or cardiovascular disease.
By comparison, those eating a plant based diet had the least incidents of disease, consistent with previous studies that reported a vegetable based diet was the most heart healthy.
Similarly, another study, the Oxford Vegetarian Study, followed 15,000 subjects and found that meat eaters are twice as likely to die from heart disease, have a 60 percent greater risk of dying from cancer and a 30 percent higher risk of death from other causes.
While the statistics are important, there were other revealing parts of the study most have not reported.
The report also indicated that red meat eaters tended to be married, more likely white, more likely smokers, have higher body mass index, have a higher daily intake of total and saturated fat, had lower activity levels, lower intake of plant foods (fruits and vegetables) as well as vitamins.
Another interesting aspect of the report was that there was an increased risk associated with death from injuries and sudden death with higher consumption of red meat which I found interesting.
Red meat is red animal meat, and processed meats include sausages, hams, bacon, deli meats, hot dogs, cold cuts, hamburger and many other meats that could also be classified as red meats.
Bottom line is as I've always suggested, if you'd like to live longer, have more energy, reduce the risk of most any disease, avoid red and processed meats. Now the statistics confirm the recommendations.
Unfortunately, the study recommends eating a variety of other animal foods which will still kill you, just a little slower. The best diet is a mostly plant based diet that will give you the most energy, prolong your life, reduce risk of most every disease and allow you to attain your optimal weight and health. If you're wondering what plant based meals you can add to your diet get specific meal plans and exclusive recipe videos at Learn Healthy Meals.
To read the study abstract visit the Archives of Internal Medicine.