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Caution for Carnivores

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The meat you eat may be killing you. According to a study out of the National Cancer Institute, diets high in red and processed meats may shorten your lifespan due to a murderer’s row of threats: cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, stomach ulcers and other conditions.

In the study, people eating the most meat were downing approximately a daily 6 oz steak. Those who ate the least were only getting about a small sliver of bacon. Interestingly, reducing meat consumption to the amount eaten by the bottom 20 percent seen in the study would save 11 percent of men’s lives and 16 percent of women’s, according to the study's authors.

The researchers say cancer-causing compounds are formed during the cooking of meat at high temperatures. They looked at the diets of more than half a million people, ages 50 to 71, over a decade. Participants tended to be white and educated with fewer smokers and more vegetable-and-fruit eaters than in the general population. Men and women eating the highest amount of red meat were found to have a 31 percent and 36 percent, respectively, higher risk of dying from any cause than those eating the least amount.

The bright spot: People who ate the most white meat showed a lower risk of dying. So, no, we’re not saying to cut out all burgers and steaks, since many experts oppose these findings at this point. But be mindful of how much red and processed meat you eat. Another good rule: Keep it lean.

About The Author

David Schipper – David began writing for CorePerformance.com in 2008, after spending six years at Men's Health magazine digging up the newest scientific research in health, weight loss, nutrition, muscle and cardiovascular fitness.

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Tags: Longevity, Health, Eating Out, Cooking, Disease, Food