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The Link Between Red Meat and Ill Health: New Insights

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Red Meat

Red Meat

Are you fond of eating red meat? Well, you better not be. Studies are now showing that red meat is associated with a lot of ugly health effects nowadays. You may be grateful to know how red, processed meat can actually ruin your health.

 Red Meat

 Red meat can give rise to certain medical problems such as Alzheimer's disease, cardiovascular disease, colon cancers, type 2 diabetes, viral diseases, and other problems. Red meat may increase Alzheimer's disease, a disease which is marked by protein accumulation in the brain. These proteins such as Tau and beta-amyloid accumulate in the brain to cause damage and death to nerve cells, and this later on brings about Alzheimer's dementia. New studies have also told that iron accumulation in the brain is one contributing factor to Alzheimer's disease. Experts speculate that iron accumulation may be a result of high red meat consumption.

 A lot of studies have focused on the link between red meat and heart disease. Some of these studies say that this link is not related to the saturated fats and cholesterol that is derived from red meat but instead from the way that gut microbes break down red meat into a substance known as carnitine. Carnitine further turns into trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO) which further causes atherosclerosis or the buildup of fats in the blood vessels, causing diseases such as heart attacks and stroke.

 Colon cancers can surface out because of a high consumption of red meat. In studies, it was shown that people between the ages of 50 to 75 years old who ate red meat regularly elevated their risk for colorectal cancers. On the other hand, fish, fowl and vegetables seem to lower the risk for this type of cancer. Red meat consumption also increases your risk for type 2 diabetes.

 Virus infections can also be easily obtained from regular red meat consumption. One of these diseases is Mad Cow disease, an epidemic which started in the United Kingdom in 1986. It may also cause another infection known as variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease which can be life-threatening for only a few months.

 Meat is also not the same meat that people consumed during the early years. Red meat being sold in supermarkets are now being pumped with hormones and antibiotics to help animals grow faster and be free from diseases. These antibiotics and hormones may still be present in the red meat that we consume today. These chemicals may act as toxins in your body and may cause health  dangers to us and to unborn children. This is why we need to be careful about red meat consumption. Health organizations nowadays are advising people to limit their intake of red and processed meat so as to not experience their bad effects on health.

 Red Meat and Health

 A recent paper by 23 scientists talks more about the uncertainties in previous research about the link between red meat and ill-health. This report, published in the latest issue of journal Meat Science has suggested that experts should do more research and improve future recommendations on red meat intake. This review talks about recent studies that have tried to establish the link between red meat consumption and cancer risk in humans and animals. Animals can develop prostate cancer if fed with red meat without vegetables, fiber, milk or other sources of calcium. In humans, there is a small observed association between red meat consumption and cancer risk; the authors claim that this may be due to the fact that animals are more dependent on vegetables and natural diets than humans. These experts also claimed that the damage caused by meat to humans can be reversed by consuming other foods that may enhance the activity of the bacteria living on the human gut.

 The group continues to conclude that for experts to fully understand the link between red meat consumption and human health, they should first understand how the body gets affected by the food that it eats. They recommend that food organizations should develop more guidelines that say how much red meat should be consumed by people, the composition of meat that should be eaten and how meat consumption affects cancer risks.

 You can learn more about red meat when you read our other articles on this site.