Want to live longer? Cut back on red meat

Burger lovers beware: People who eat red meat every day have a higher risk of dying over a 10-year period — mostly because of cardiovascular disease or cancer –than their peers who eat less red or processed meat, according to a new study of about half a million people.

“This is the biggest and highest quality study like this,” says Barry M. Popkin, Ph.D., from the University of North Carolina, who wrote an editorial accompanying the study, which was published Monday in Archives of Internal Medicine. “They collected the diet data very carefully, and it’s saying to people, ‘You don’t have to eat red meat every day.’ ”

n the study, a research team led by Rashmi Sinha, Ph.D., from the National Cancer Institute in Rockville, Maryland, looked at more than 500,000 people who were aged 50 to 71 when they enrolled in the National Institutes of Health-AARP Diet and Health study.

Over a 10-year period, people who ate the most red meat every day (about 62.5 grams per 1,000 calories per day, equivalent to a quarter-pound burger or small steak per day) had about a 30 percent greater risk of dying compared with those who consumed the least amount of red meat (a median of 9.8 grams per 1,000 calories per day). The excess mortality was mostly the result of cardiovascular disease and cancer.  Continued…

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