Red Meat Could Be Ticket to Early Grave

Published March 24, 2009

Here’s a tip for those wanting to live a long and healthy life: Leave the hotdogs, burgers and spareribs alone.   That’s right, a new study shows.

Those who make a daily habit of acting out their carnivorous propensities have a higher risk of suffering from maladies like heart disease and cancer over a 10-year period.   In other words, munching on red meat marks a shortcut to the grave.

"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.’”

The decade-long study of more than a half-million people found that “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),” ABC/Reuters News reports. “The excess mortality was mostly the result of cardiovascular disease and cancer.”

The study, conducted by a research team led by Rashmi Sinha, Ph.D., from the National Cancer Institute in Rockville, Md., looked at all types of beef and pork, including bacon, cold cuts, ham, hamburgers, hot dogs, and steak, as well as meat in pizza, chili, lasagna, and stew.

Written by BET.com Staff

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