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Red meat linked to greater risk of death according to study

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According to a study published in The BMJ, increasing food consumption of red meat is linked to an increased general risk of premature death. However, this increase in risk can be reduced, as well as by a lower consumption naturally, with greater consumption of healthy protein sources, ie those deriving from eggs, fish, whole grains and vegetables.

This is not the first research to highlight the negative aspect of too frequent red meat consumption, but it is one of the first to link the risk of death directly to this type of food consumption. The group of researchers, from the United States and China, used a database concerning a nursing health study that contained data from 53,553 American nurses aged between 30 and 55 years. Individuals had been followed from 1986 until 2010.

They then used another database concerning 27,916 US male health workers aged between 40 and 75 years. All subjects during the follow-up period had to regularly complete questionnaires regarding the various factors, including what they ate.

The main causes of death were mainly related to cardiovascular diseases, cancer, respiratory diseases and neurodegenerative diseases. In relation to meat consumption, researchers found that the increase in red meat consumption, whether processed or unprocessed, by 3.5 doses a week or more over eight years was associated with a risk of death greater than 10%.

Considering only processed red meat (for example, bacon, sausage, sausage, salami, etc.), an increase in the usual feeding style of 3.5 servings per week or more was associated with a 13% higher risk of death. Finally, considering only the unprocessed red meat, the risk dropped to 9%.

The risk level was calculated by researchers also taking into account the different age groups, levels of physical activity, food quality and various habits such as smoking or alcohol intake.

According to the researchers, the results of this cohort study, although they cannot establish a certain cause related to the deaths, provide “a practical message to the general public on how dynamic changes in consumption lead to red consumption associated with health.”

Sean Cox

I am a Physics professor at Florida A&M University and an amateur astronomer with a keen interest in not just my own areas of specialization, but also biology, robotics and computer science (I am also an amateur C++ programmer and Python developer). While my current responsibilities do not allow me to spend a whole lot of time writing about science research, I thoroughly enjoy doing so when I get the chance, and started Bitobit News to engage in that hobby and also to try to get at least a few other people interested in the wonderful world of science.

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